Southern Co. Buys Kay Wind Project From Apex Clean Energy


An affiliate of Southern Co. has agreed to purchase Apex Clean Energy's 299 MW Kay Wind Project, located in Kay County, Okla. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The transaction represents not only the company's largest renewable electric generating facility but also its first wind generation project. The acquisition is expected to close later this year when the project is completed.

According to Southern Co., the deal fits its business strategy of growing its wholesale business through the acquisition and construction of generating assets substantially covered by long-term contracts – one of the wind farm's key attributes.

The entirety of the output generated by the wind farm – as well as the associated renewable energy certificates (RECs) – will be sold under 20-year power purchase agreements with Kansas-based Westar Energy and Oklahoma's Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA). Westar has contracted for approximately 199 MW, and GRDA has contracted for approximately 100 MW. Both companies will have the option to either keep or sell the RECs.

Apex will build and manage the wind farm. Blattner Energy will serve as the engineering, procurement and construction contractor. Apex will provide comprehensive asset management services led by an on-site operations team and supported remotely from the company's operations control center in Charlottesville.

The project will be powered by Siemens SWT-2.3-108 wind turbines, each with a power rating of 2.3 MW and 53-meter blades. The nacelles for the project will be assembled at the Siemens facility in Hutchinson, Kan. The blades will be manufactured at the Siemens blade facility in Fort Madison, Iowa.

Apex also said it had reached financial close of a $397 million construction loan for the project. The New York branches of Bayerische Landesbank and Rabobank acted as the joint lead arrangers, coordinating lead arrangers and joint bookrunners for the transaction.

Additionally, Commerce, N.Y.-based Canadian Imperial Bank, Commerzbank's New York branch, KeyBank National Association and Siemens Financial Services acted as joint lead arrangers. Rabobank is the administrative agent, collateral agent and issuing bank.

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