RPM Access completes financing for two Iowa projects

RPM Access has secured construction and term financing for two new wind projects currently under construction in Iowa. The 36-MW Hawkeye wind energy project in Fayette County and the 50-MW Rippey wind energy project in Greene County.

Rabobank and BayernLB, through their New York offices, will provide credit facilities that include construction, the Treasury cash grant bridge and term loans in excess of $116mn. Milbank Tweed Hadley McCloy LLP served as legal counsel to the lenders. Kaye Scholer LLP served as legal counsel to RPM Access.

“We are very pleased to have received financing from two highly-respected and leading financial institutions in the international renewable energy arena that will provide both short-term and long-term funding for our Hawkeye and Rippey wind farms in America’s heartland,” said Stephen Dryden, principal of RPM Access.

Construction on the Hawkeye and Rippey wind energy projects began in November, 2011, which qualified them for the cash grants. Both projects are on schedule to be fully operational in the fall of 2012, qualifying them for the expiring federal production tax credit.

The two projects, combined, will consist of thirty-five Nordex 2.5-MW turbines manufactured at Nordex USA’s new manufacturing facility in Jonesboro, Ark. M.A. Mortenson of Minneapolis, Minn., is the construction contractor for both projects.

Central Iowa Power Cooperative, which is based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, will purchase the power generated by both projects under long-term power purchase agreements.

In 2011 RPM Access completed the 41 MW Elk Wind Farm. With a cash grant under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and financing from Rabobank and another bank, Elk became the first wind farm owned and operated by RPM Access. With the addition of its Hawkeye and Rippey wind farms this year, RPM Access will own and operate approximately 127 MW of wind energy projects in Iowa.

Combined with RPM Access’ sale of its 120 MW Laurel Wind Farm and 103 MW Vienna Wind Farm to MidAmerican Energy Company, RPM Access has been responsible for the development of nearly 350 MW of new installed wind generation capacity in Iowa in 2011 and 2012.