Vena Energy has reached financial close on the first stage of the 125 MW Wandoan South Solar Project, located in the local government area of Western Downs in Queensland.
The Project will be capable of producing up to 365 gigawatt hours of energy annually, or the equivalent of supplying clean renewable energy to approximately 60,000 averaged-sized Australian households.
Owen Sela, Head of Vena Energy Australia, said that reaching financial close on such a significant project is instrumental to Vena Energy’s vision to support Australia’s energy transition.
“Climate change presents a real and ever-present threat to the environment, as well as our way of life, and Vena Energy is committed to accelerating the development of innovative renewable energy projects and generation of clean, sustainable energy in Australia,” Mr Sela said.
“Even accounting for recent cost inflation trends, solar PV is still one of the most cost-competitive sources of energy in Australia today.
“With the Wandoan South Solar Project, Vena Energy continues to serve its customers’ demand for affordable and clean electricity whilst helping them decarbonise and contribute towards Australia’s net-zero targets.
“Wandoan South Solar Stage 1 will make a significant contribution to the local, regional, and national economy throughout its lifespan.
“With the commencement of construction earlier this year, Vena Energy anticipates a peak workforce of approximately 350 people as well as business opportunities for local companies within the region to support the construction of the project.”
Vena Energy’s partner banks DBS, ING, Intesa Sanpaolo, OCBC Bank, and SMBC have agreed to provide debt and ancillary facilities to the 125 MW Wandoan South Solar Stage 1.
The facilities meet the criteria of ‘Green Loan’ financing, which is aligned with Vena Energy’s Green Financing Framework.
This is Vena Energy’s third green project financing in Australia.
DBS acted as the Joint-Green Structuring Bank, Financial Model Coordinator and Facility Agent; Intesa Sanpaolo as the Joint-Green Structuring Bank; and SMBC as the Technical Coordinator and Project Account Bank.
Lim Wee Seng, Group Head of Energy, Renewables, and Infrastructure at DBS said, “Sustainability and innovation are intrinsically linked, forming twin engines driving progress to achieve a net zero future.
“As a leading bank in sustainable financing, we are excited to continue supporting Vena Energy as it expands its renewables investment footprint, as well as Australia’s efforts to scale its renewable assets and achieve its net zero commitments.”
Sam Terko, Head of Energy for Wholesale Banking for ING Australia, said, “The financing of the Wandoan South Solar Project adds to several transactions we have executed for Vena Energy in Australia and globally.
“This further strengthens our relationship with Vena Energy and reiterates our commitment towards supporting other renewable initiatives and decarbonisation efforts, further reinforcing our leading track record in financing the energy transition in the Australian market.”
Nicola Doninelli, Head of the International Network of the IMI Corporate & Investment Banking Division at Intesa Sanpaolo said, “We are delighted to partner with a leading company like Vena Energy.
“The deal underpins the key role that our Group plays in supporting the energy transition and renewable energy projects globally.”
Ms Elaine Lam, Head, Global Corporate Banking, OCBC Bank, said, “Helping customers make strides in transitioning to a low-carbon future is a strategic priority for us.”
“We are pleased to support Vena Energy Australia on this green loan for its Wandoan South Solar Project that will deliver affordable, clean energy.
“It is our first solar project in Australia and will add to the encouraging growth momentum of our global renewable energy projects portfolio.”
Luca Tonello, Managing Director, Structured Finance Department, Asia Pacific at SMBC said, “SMBC is committed to making sustainability a reality with our stakeholders, and we are delighted to support Vena Energy on its journey in Asia Pacific.”