Internet giant Google is to provide US$145 million equity finance for an 82MW US PV project in the portfolio being operated by SunEdison’s spin-off yield co, TerraForm.
SunEdison today confirmed Google’s investment in the Regulus PV power plant in Kern County, California, a project it said would be the company’s largest in North America to date and would represent 10% of TerraForm’s 808MW project portfolio.
The project will use 248,000 SunEdison modules and will sell power to Southern California Edison through a 20-year power purchase agreement.
Prudential Capital Group and Santander Bank, N.A, provided term financing for the project.
“From developing the technology, to constructing the facility, to establishing mutually beneficial financial partnerships with leaders like Google, Prudential and Santander Bank, N.A., Regulus is a prime example of how SunEdison's end-to-end approach benefits everyone involved in a solar project,” said Bob Powell, president, North America at SunEdison. “That we've already made such progress on a project that broke ground in December 2013 is a testament to the speed and efficiency of our process.”
“We believe the world needs a wide range of clean energy technologies, each serving different needs,” said Nick Coons, renewable energy principal at Google. “This project with SunEdison presented an opportunity to take an old gas and oil field and turn it into a clean energy producing solar site. It made sense to support it on multiple levels.”
Yield co models such as the one embodied by TerraForm are attracting significant interest in the solar industry because of the attractive returns they offer investors and the access they give developers to low-cost finance.
In July TerraForm’s IPO surpassed expectation, raising over US$500 million.