The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Jan. 29 approved a November 2015 application from 8point3 Energy Partners LP, Kingbird Solar A LLC and Kingbird Solar B LLC for authorization for the sale by First Solar of indirect equity interests in Kingbird A and Kingbird B to 8Point3 Operating Co. LLC (OpCo), a company controlled and partially owned by 8point3 Partners.
OpCo is jointly owned by 8point3 Partners, First Solar and SunPower Corp., and indirectly holds ownership interests in a portfolio of solar projects transferred by its sponsors (First Solar and SunPower) as part of an initial contribution of assets approved by the commission in another case.
OpCo currently holds equity interests in approximately 377 MW of solar wholesale generation capacity located in the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) and PJM Interconnection markets and the Imperial Irrigation District (IID) balancing authority area (BAA). OpCo also owns 16 MW of behind the-meter, non-jurisdictional commercial and industrial solar facilities in California and 39 MW of behind-the-meter, non-jurisdictional residential rooftop solar facilities located in nine states.
8point3 Partners owns a minority economic interest in OpCo and controls OpCo through the ownership of a non-economic, managing member interest. The majority of the economic interests in OpCo are held by the sponsors, and 8point3 Partners is indirectly controlled by the sponsors. 8point3 Partners is a yieldco formed by the sponsors as a vehicle for monetizing the value of certain of their contracted solar generation assets.
- Kingbird A, which is indirectly owned by First Solar, owns a 20-MW solar photovoltaic facility located in Kern County, California. The Kingbird A Project is expected to begin commercial operation in early 2016 and will interconnect to transmission facilities owned by Southern California Edison within the CAISO market. The entire output of the Kingbird A Project is committed to the City of Pasadena under a long-term power purchase agreement.
- Kingbird B, indirectly owned by First Solar, owns a 20-MW photovoltaic facility located in Kern County, California. The Kingbird B Project will also interconnect to transmission facilities owned by Southern California Edison. The entire output of the Kingbird B Facility is committed to Southern California Edison under a long-term power purchase agreement.