Pivot Energy has secured a ~$203 million financing facility to support a multi-state portfolio of distributed generation solar projects. Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), a division of First Citizens Bank, will lead the debt facilities, and Foss & Co. will make the initial tax equity investment. The 100 MWdc portfolio comprises 35 community solar and C&I projects planned to reach commercial operation between Q2 2023 and Q2 2024.
The financing is Pivot’s second portfolio of projects the company will build, own and operate since its strategic acquisition by ECP in June 2021. The community solar subscribers in this portfolio include commercial clients, such as municipalities, healthcare facilities, food service and retail; residential customers; and approximately 8,000 low-to-moderate income (LMI) households.
This broader portfolio comprises the most extensive LMI community solar portfolio developed to date. It exhibits strategic diversity across project types, client offtake arrangements and geographic reach with projects in Colorado, Minnesota, Illinois, New York, Hawaii, Maryland and California. This geographic and customer diversity is beneficial in bringing clean solar energy to more Americans and strengthening the portfolio’s long-term financial outlook.
The transaction is the first syndicated loan closing that SVB has led since the recent acquisition by First Citizens Bank. SVB pioneered community solar financing solutions and has remained a preeminent leader in the market. This transaction shows First Citizens Bank’s commitment to continue lending to this vital space.
“Pivot Energy and ECP are front runners in transitioning our energy sources to affordable, clean, renewable energy for all, accelerating the growth of community solar across the United States,” said Bret Turner, head of project finance, business development and innovation for Silicon Valley Bank. “We are pleased to have led and structured this portfolio of solar projects across 35 sites in 7 key markets.”
The debt transaction led by SVB includes a construction loan, tax equity bridge loan, and term loan. SVB circled the financing and will act as a Coordinating Lead Arranger (CLA), Sole Bookrunner and Administrative Agent with J.P. Morgan, National Bank of Canada, Bank United, Cadence and Comerica. J.P. Morgan acted as CLA and National Bank of Canada, Bank United, Cadence and Comerica acted as Lenders. National Bank of Canada provided the Letter of Credit Facility. This portfolio marks J.P. Morgan’s first debt financing in the community solar market.
Foss has provided the initial tax equity investment, which coupled with the debt financing, will enable Pivot to construct, operate, and own the portfolio. SVB and Foss & Company acted as the lead financing parties for Pivot’s inaugural portfolio that closed in 2022.
“This initiative will expand access to clean, affordable energy for small businesses and low-income households, reinforcing our commitment to invest in tax equity within under-served market segments,” said Bryen Alperin, managing director at Foss & Co. “Furthermore, it is expected to generate substantial environmental benefits, aligning with our vision for a more sustainable future.”
CohnReznick Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Pivot Energy on the transaction. Stoel Rives served as counsel for Pivot, Milbank served as counsel for SVB, and Winthrop & Weinstine served as counsel for Foss.
SunCentral, Pivot’s industry-leading proprietary community solar subscriber management and acquisition platform, will manage the portfolio through operations.
— Solar Builder magazine
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