Linklaters Paris advises NORD/LB on a 11 turbines wind farm project, first of Velocita’s 220 MW+ on-shore wind projects pipeline

Linklaters Paris advised Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale (NORD/LB) acting as sole arranger on the structuring and financing of an 11 turbines on-shore wind farm located in the Franche-Comté region (France) developed by Opale Energies Naturelles on behalf of Velocita Energies. The turbines will be supplied by General Electric, which will also provide operation and maintenance services. The next wind farms of Velocita’s 220 MW+ pipeline are expected in 2015 and 2016.

François April, a banking and projects Partner, was in charge of the structuring of the limited recourse financing. He was assisted by Mark Barges, Samuel Bordeleau and Alex Bluett on the projects aspects and by Vivien Bon, Adèle Bazin and Aïcha Diallo on financing aspects. Pierre Guillot provided support on public law matters and Amaury Chautard and Nawel Belabdelouahab advised on real estate aspects. Edouard Chapellier, Partner, advised on the tax structuring of the transaction with the help of Alexandra Mourlon, associate.

Linklaters in Paris is recognised for its experience in the energy sector, and is regularly appointed by investors, sponsors and banks alike in major transactions in France, including renewable energy projects. In the last few years, it advised in particular Société Générale on the structuring and financing of the largest solar power plant in Europe, Ardian (formerly known as AXA Private Equity) and Neoen on the acquisition of Poweo’s renewable energy assets, Mirova on joint ventures with Holmen and Platina in Swedish wind energy assets, GDF Suez on its bids for offshore wind projects in Noirmoutier and Le Tréport and Marubeni in relation to the acquisition of renewable energy assets from GDF Suez in Portugal. In the last three years, our Paris office was also involved in a large number of greenfield renewable energy project financings (wind and solar) with an aggregate installed capacity of more than 1130 MW, and also participated in refinancings, acquisitions and disposals of operational projects portfolios with a total installed capacity superior to 1300 MW.

On the international front, Linklaters Paris has recently advised commercial lenders and export credit agencies on the landmark US$1.4 billion equivalent multi-currency limited recourse project financing of the Jorf Lasfar IPP Expansion in Morocco, and currently advises the lenders on the Safi IPP, also in Morocco. It has advised GDF Suez on the merger of its international energy division with International Power and on the acquisition by China Investment Corporation (CIC) of a 30% stake in its Exploration & Production division and of a 10% stake in LNG Atlantic.

Linklaters is also one of the first firms to have created a team specifically dedicated to renewable energy within its international network, and is an active member of the French SER (Syndicate of Renewable Energy).

Other legal advisors

Allen & Overy advised Velocita for the project and financing aspects of the transaction, while CGR Legal advised on the public law matters.