The Foresight Group has refinanced its existing portfolio of UK solar assets with the issue of a £60 million solar bond.
In conjunction with Independent Debt Capital Markets LLP, Foresight was able to raise the bond against the group’s operational solar farms, located in Kent, Somerset and Wiltshire.
Ricardo Pineiro, investment manager at Foresight explained: “After more than five years in the solar sector, we are pleased to have put this structure in place which is forecast to deliver enhanced returns to our equity investors.
“Foresight plans to deploy a further £250 million into new large scale ground-based solar projects in the UK over the next 12 months and we can offer greater value to developers and other owners of solar projects given our efficient capital structure.
“We are finding growing appetite from both institutional and retail investors, who see solar power as a maturing asset class with an attractive risk profile.”
Foresight has invested heavily in solar infrastructure, holding over £310 million in solar assets across the UK, Italy, Spain and the US.
The asset management group explained that regulatory changes in the banking sector have meant that bond instruments have become an increasingly popular method of refinancing. The index-linked nature of a solar farm’s revenue stream means that institutional investors are offered fixed income-like return that is more attractive than the current low yields offered by index-linked treasury gilts.
Jean-Christophe Oberto, partner at IDCM added: “This transaction is a further demonstration of the attractiveness of our financing solution for the solar PV Sector. Having now arranged more than £100 million of solar bond issuance, IDCM is a pioneer in solar bond financing and we are delighted to partner with asset managers such as Foresight to offer our clients a comprehensive financing solution which will contribute to the development of the renewable sector as a whole”.
The bond will be listed on the London Stock Exchange.