GIP buys into ‘world’s largest offshore wind farm’ in $5.9bn deal

The acquisition of a 50% stake in Hornsea I is the third time it partners with Orsted for offshore wind projects.

Global Infrastructure Partners has acquired a 50 percent stake in the 1.2GW Hornsea 1 project – billed as the “world’s largest offshore wind farm” – from Danish developer Orsted for a total price tag of £4.46 billion ($5.86 billion; €5.02 billion).

The deal covers GIP’s acquisition of a stake in the project – which was estimated in 2016 to cost around £6 billion – as well as funding 50 percent of the EPC contract to develop Hornsea 1, Orsted said in a statment.

According to the statement, GIP is partially financing the transaction through a multi-tranche debt package of more than £3.5 billion. The latter includes investment-grade project bonds issued to blue-chip institutional-debt providers with a “strong UK presence.” It also includes commercial bank loans and mezzanine debt provided by Danish pension fund PFA.

Some of the tranches are guaranteed by the Danish Export Credit Agency EKF, the statement added.

GIP did not reply to a request for comment.

The New York-based firm has partnered with Orsted on two other offshore wind projects, including the 330MW Gode I and the 450MW Borkum Riffgrund 2.

Hornsea is being build 120km off the English coast, in the North Sea. When completed in 2020, the project will span 407 square km.