Lightsource bp has successfully closed on a $533 million multi-project financing package and will soon mobilize construction on its 135 MW DC Conway Solar project located near Happy, Ark., approximately 55 miles northeast of Little Rock.
Lightsource bp will build, own and operate the facility, as well as deliver the energy it generates to Conway Corp. under a long-term power purchase agreement for their customers in the City of Conway. The solar farm will generate enough electricity to power more than 21,400 homes.
“Our mission is to provide safe, affordable, reliable, innovative and environmentally sound service to our customers,” says Bret Carroll, Conway Corp.’s CEO. “This solar project checks all those boxes. It is a project that will have lasting impact on our community. We look forward to working with Lightsource bp to get the project under construction and delivering service to our customers.”
Conway Solar is part of a 480 MW, $533 million portfolio financing package for multiple solar projects. Debt for the portfolio was provided by the following mandated lead arrangers, with the balance of equity requirements invested and supported by Lightsource bp: HSBC Bank USA, National Association, part of HSBC Group, acted as a coordinating lead arranger. ING Capital LLC, an indirect U.S. subsidiary of ING Bank NV, part of ING Group NV, acted as the green loan coordinator. Intesa Sanpaolo S.p.A., New York Branch, acted as a coordinating lead arranger. Other arrangers included NatWest, Societe Generale and Standard Chartered Bank.
“Beyond improving the health and energy security of communities across America, large-scale solar projects help strengthen local economies,” states Kevin Smith, CEO of the Americas for Lightsource bp. As the owner and operator of the Conway solar farm at Happy, we look forward to bringing economic benefits to the region, along with fostering long-term community partnerships.”
Construction of the Conway Solar farm at Happy will start in March 2022, with full commercial operation expected in mid-2023. Gibson Technical Services, a subsidiary of Orbital Energy Group, has been selected by Lightsource bp as the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for the photovoltaic solar plant.
“Orbital Energy Group recognizes Lightsource bp as a leading utility scale solar developer in the nation and appreciates the relationship we have established moving the Conway project to the construction phase,” adds Jim O’Neil, vice chairman and CEO of Orbital Energy Group. “We fully expect to advance our partnership with Lightsource bp, safely completing this project on time, and with quality workmanship.”