UK: SgurrEnergy Conducts Advisory Scope for Lenders on Lincs OWF
The £1 billion Lincs offshore wind farm was energised and officially opened by Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg in August. The 270MW energy project is a resounding success for SgurrEnergy, whose team provided lender’s engineer advisory services during the pre-financial close and construction monitoring phases of the project.
The high profile project, which SgurrEnergy began working on in 2009, saw the last of the 75 Siemens SWT-3.6-120 3.6MW wind turbines connected to the National Grid last week, allowing the 270MW-strong wind farm to begin producing enough energy to power more than 200,000 homes. Lincs is the first project financed offshore wind farm in the UK to be financed pre-completion, and had more than 350 people involved in the construction.
Keith Williamson, SgurrEnergy’s project manager representing the Lincs project, said: “The working relationship between Lincs Wind Farm Ltd., the lenders and SgurrEnergy has resulted in the lenders having sufficient confidence to lend to a multi-contract project project on a project finance basis.”
“This was one of the most complex and challenging assignments we have carried out to date, due to the large number of contracts involved, the fact that financial close occurred after construction had commenced and the various technical and commercial challenges which were encountered during the project financing process and then in construction. It is extremely rewarding to focus our expert due diligence skills on such a high profile project, and play a key role in the financing and delivery of this landmark project.”
SgurrEnergy’s director of advisory services, Simon Luby, said: “This project is a first for the UK industry as traditionally construction was completed prior to project financing taking place. The success of the Lincs project has set a precedent for other UK and multi-contract offshore wind farms to be subsequently financed during, or prior to completion.
This project had the most construction contracts of any offshore wind project financed to date and this meant that more complex and intensive due diligence was required.”
Now that construction is complete, SgurrEnergy’s advisory services team will provide operations monitoring services for the lenders.
The joint venture between UK energy company Centrica Energy, offshore wind specialists, DONG Energy and Siemens Project Ventures is operated from a £3-million purpose-built operations and maintenance base in Grimsby, Lincolnshire.
Press release, August 30, 2013; Image: gov