Australia: Norton Rose Fulbright advises BlackRock on first renewable power investment in Australia
Last Updated: 17 August 2017

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised a fund managed by BlackRock on the acquisition of a majority interest in a portfolio of two large scale solar PV projects in Queensland.

The projects are the 150MW Daydream project and the 50MW Hayman. They have been developed by Edify Energy and project financing was provided by Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Natixis and Clean Energy Finance Corporation. Elgar Middleton acted as financial adviser to Edify on the project financing of the portfolio.

The acquisition and financing closed on August 10, 2017 and the projects are scheduled for completion in 2018. Origin Energy has entered into a PPA to purchase all of the output and renewable energy certificates from the Daydream Project until 2030.

Norton Rose Fulbright global head of energy Simon Currie commented:

'BlackRock is the world's largest asset manager. This investment by BlackRock demonstrates the attractiveness of Australia as a destination for renewable energy investments.'

Special counsel Chris Mitchell, who led BlackRock's equity investment, commented:

'It was a pleasure to assist BlackRock with its first renewable power investment in Australia. The transaction is reflective of the continued transformation of the Australian renewable energy landscape and the intense global interest in the Australian energy sector.'

The team advising BlackRock was led by Simon Currie, Chris Mitchell and Kelly Davies, supported by associate Chanel Mercurio, with senior associates Kathy Prince (real estate), Juliette King (environment and planning) and special counsel Steven Choi (construction and engineering). Other Australian partners who advised on the deal were Noni Shannon, Emanuel Confos, Michael French and Shane Bilardi.

Our team is currently working on over 30 large scale solar projects across Australia. Earlier this year we advised international solar energy company Wirsol Energy on the acquisition and project financing of a portfolio of three large scale solar PV projects in Queensland and Victoria – the first portfolio acquisition and financing of utility scale solar PV in Australia and the first financing for solar PV with merchant exposure and long term debt from the local market.

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