Scottish Widows in £96m loan to Constantine Wind

Scottish Widows Loan Investments said it has provided a £96 million long-term loan facility to Constantine Wind Energy (CWE), one of the largest operators of small-scale, onshore wind turbine sites in the UK.

The 17-year project finance loan will fund 185 of CWE’s onshore wind turbines spread around 132 locations across the UK – with capacity to power around 15,000 homes.

CWE turbines have a generation capacity of 28MW and are located at sites from the Isle of Skye to Cornwall, with a significant presence in the South West of England and Scotland.

“As part of Lloyds Banking Group, Scottish Widows was not only able to secure the loan facility for CWE, but enabled the business to benefit from Lloyds Bank’s structuring and inflation risk management expertise, bringing CWE’s assets under a single simplified financing model,” said Scottish Widows.

Scottish Widows Loan Investments director Manuel Dusina said: “We’re proud to continue supporting the renewable energy industry as part of our sustainability commitment, and our first onshore wind deal with market leader CWE demonstrates the real value we can generate for mid-market businesses in this sector.

“The benefits of increased operational efficiency through asset consolidation in portfolios across the onshore wind market is a trend we expect to continue seeing in 2021, and our specialist team backed by the broader capability of Lloyds Banking Group puts us in great shape to grow our investment in this sector.”

Constantine Wind Energy director Bruce Hutt said: “The Scottish Widows financing is a significant landmark for CWE, providing us with a single loan for all our FIT assets at an historically low interest rate and for the long term, while also releasing capital to fund the further growth of the business.

“The loan is a testament to the approach of our asset management team, our advisers and the continued support of the lending community.”

Scottish Widows said that since 2018 it has advanced more than £400 million to support green initiatives across the UK, including wind and solar renewable energy projects as well as the roll-out of smart meters.