Cobra achieves a loan for floating wind energy

Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios has secured a GBP 380 million green loan financing for the construction of the Kincardine floating wind farm offshore Scotland.

The project comprises the construction of a 50 MW wind farm some 15 kilometres south-east of Aberdeen.

Kincardine will consist of six turbines, one 2 MW which was commissioned back in October 2018, and five 9.6 MW units, all supplied by MHI Vestas, installed on semi-submersible floating structures designed by Principle Power.

Located in water depths ranging between 60-80 metres, the project is expected to be fully operational by the fourth quarter of 2020, becoming the largest floating wind farm in the world.

French corporate and investment bank Natixis acted as sole green loan coordinator for the financing. Natixis was also one of the mandated lead arrangers, underwriters, and bookrunners for the transaction, which closed on 12 June.

Jean Philippe Adam, Senior Country Manager, Spain and Portugal, Corporate & Investment Banking at Natixis, said: “Natixis is very pleased to support its key client Cobra in this landmark transaction which confirms Natixis’ leadership in the Green, Social and Sustainability financing.”

Through the certification process conducted by Natixis, the financing of the project was awarded the “Certified Climate Bond” label by Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI).

Vigeo Eiris has been mandated as verifier of the Marine Renewable Energy Criteria. These scientific criteria ensure that the certified loan is consistent with the 2°C warming limit in the Paris Agreement. Under the certification, Cobra will report regularly on the project’s adherence to KPIs defined in accordance with CBI guidelines.

Sean Kidney, CEO, Climate Bonds Initiative, said: “This is the first Climate Bonds Certification of a floating offshore wind project, congratulations are due to both Cobra and Natixis for their innovation and leadership. It’s a global scale transaction providing a strong pointer to the enormous investment potential in the floating wind energy sector.”