The "Andromeda" bond sale involves the securitisation of SunPower Italy's project finance loans for construction of two adjacent Italian solar parks with a capacity of 45.3MW and 6.1MW. Lead managers are BNP Paribas and Société Générale.
These will, as far as we know, be the first bond linked to solar assets. There are two issues of EUR 97.6 million; the first is fully backed by the Italian Import/Export agence, SACE, and rated Aa2 by Moodys. These have been placed with European institutional investors. The second tranche are not backled, and are rated Baa3; they've been placed with the European Investment Bank.
Investment-grade bond sales are expected to bring new investors into the renewable space. Environmental Finance quoted Morningstar analyst Stephen Simko as saying: “Given the huge amounts of financing needed to build ever-larger projects in future years, solar bonds could prove innovative in reducing the industry's dependence on banks and other financial institutions for the financing required to build large-scale projects.”