Mirova closes €104m debt deal for French wind farms

The projects are some of the first to be financed under France’s new renewables regime.

French fund manager Mirova has closed financing on three onshore wind farms in France after securing €104 million of debt.

The projects have a combined capacity of 75MW and are being developed as part of Mirova’s joint venture with developer Valeco, announced in November. The three wind farms are the second of three batches of projects that envisage nine wind and solar projects worth €300 million with a total capacity of 180MW.

The latest transaction has seen banks CEPAC, Auxifip and Crédit Agricole Languedoc commit €91 million of long-term debt and a €13 million VAT loan. The deal is one of the first financings of a renewable energy plant under new legislation introduced in France this year, said legal adviser Green Giraffe.

The updated contract-for-difference laws extend the duration of the mechanism from 15 to 20 years with wind farms no longer benefiting from the feed-in tariff system, previously providing remuneration of about €82 per MWh. The tariff is now €74 per MWh for rotor diameters smaller than 80 metres and €72 per MWh for rotor diameters larger than 100 metres. Green Giraffe added that the financing structure had to take account of new measures through which negative electricity prices are not renumerated.

Mirova said last year the €300 million deal was its largest to date. The joint investment with Valeco is part of the company’s €350 million Mirova-Eurofideme 3 fund, which closed 12 months ago and has financed about 580MW of renewable energy projects.