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Goldman unit in Mexican wind deal

GS Infrastructure Partners has teamed with Mexican infrastructure fund manager GBM Infraestructura to buy equity stakes in construction phases of the Tres Mesas project.

Oak Creek Energy Systems, a California-based developer of utility-scale wind energy projects, has sold two construction-ready stages of the 148.5-megawatt (MW) Tres Mesas Wind Project in Tamaulipas, in the north-east of Mexico, to an affiliate of GS Infrastructure Partners (GSIP) and GBM Infraestructura (GBMI).

The undisclosed equity investments made by GSIP and GBMI will support the completed construction of Phases 1 and 2 of the Tres Mesas wind complex, one of the largest sustainable energy projects seen in Mexico to date.

Sigma Alimentos, a subsidiary of Mexican industrial holding company ALFA, and Walmart de Mexico, a Mexican corporation, have committed to power purchase agreements (PPAs) with the project companies. Oak Creek Energy will continue to support the projects through Mexican operating company Oak Creek de Mexico.

The deal also sees the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and North American Development Bank (NADB) agreeing to provide senior debt financing.

OPIC will fund an $81 million loan for the 62.7MW Phase 1 through US capital markets issuance of “green guaranties” (assets adhering to Green Bond Principles). It will also fund up to $105 million for the 85.8MW Phase 2 in its first Mexican peso-denominated loan through the issuance of Certificates of Participation purchased by Banco Mercantil del Norte.

NADB is providing a peso loan to Phase 2 worth approximately $55 million.

“We are proud of the results we’ve achieved by working closely with the United States and Mexican governments to create these custom-tailored, renewable energy projects that will provide eco-friendly and inexhaustible energy for a sustainable, bright energy future,” said Niels Rydder, chief executive officer of Oak Creek Energy in a statement.

GSIP is one of the world’s largest infrastructure fund managers, having raised more than $10 billion of capital since inception since 2006. It is a unit of Goldman Sachs, the global New York-headquartered investment bank.

GBMI is a subsidiary of Corporativo GBM, currently the largest independent asset management firm in Mexico. It is one of the largest CKD (Certificados de Capital de Desarrollo)-issuing infrastructure funds in the country.