Energy Investors Funds (EIF) and I Squared Capital, an independent global infrastructure investment manager, have formed an equity partnership to construct the Oregon Clean Energy Center, a greenfield 869-MW combined-cycle natural-gas fired facility to be located in Oregon, Ohio.
EIF, through one of its private equity funds, EIF United States Power Fund IV LP (USPF IV) and I Squared Capital, through its ISQ Global Infrastructure Fund, are equal partners in the project.
The Oregon Clean Energy Center (OCEC) will use two Siemens SGT6-8000H gas turbines and one steam turbine, which are the most advanced and efficient turbines on the market. The plant’s output will play a critical role in the PJM Interconnection wholesale electricity market, which is slated for 12,000 MW of coal plant retirements in the near future. The plant is expected to begin commercial operations by July 2017.
“We’re happy to have closed on our equity partnership and debt financing, which will allow OCEC to begin construction,” said Lucas Missong, Senior Vice President at EIF, in a Nov. 17 statement. “This project will provide efficient electricity for a marketplace where new, cleaner generation is sorely needed. We’re pleased to partner with I Squared Capital on this project and look forward to working with them throughout the construction process.”
“I Squared Capital’s investment in OCEC is consistent with our strategy of investing in clean, efficient generation that will benefit from the new paradigm, arising from abundant natural gas and environmental regulations, in the U.S. electricity market.” said Adil Rahmathulla, Partner at I Squared Capital. “OCEC will serve a growing customer base in the world’s largest wholesale electricity market while reducing emissions.”
OCEC was approved by the Ohio Power Siting Board in May 2013 and has been developed by North America Project Development LLC (NAPD), utilizing loans from USPF IV. NAPD will retain an interest in OCEC going forward.
“We look forward to having EIF and I Squared Capital advance OCEC through a construction phase, and on to commercial operations,” said William J. Martin, Managing Partner of NAPD. “Both firms are name-brand partners with the resources and expertise to see this project through completion.”
EIF was founded in 1987 as one of the first private equity fund managers focused on the independent power industry. EIF has raised over $5bn in equity capital and currently manages multiple private equity funds from its offices in Boston, New York, and San Francisco. In October 2014, Ares Management LP (NYSE: ARES) announced that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire EIF through one of its subsidiaries. The acquisition, which is subject to customary closing conditions including investor consents and regulatory approvals, is expected to close before year-end.
I Squared Capital is an independent global infrastructure investment manager focusing on energy, utilities, and transport in North America, Europe, and select high growth economies. The firm has offices in New York, Houston, London, New Delhi, Hong Kong and Singapore.
NAPD was established by Bill Siderewicz and Bill Martin, each with over 34 years experience in private power, having developed well over 10,000 MW of operating power projects.