Northleaf investing in Apex Clean Energy portfolio in Texas

Virginia-based Apex Clean Energy said July 15 that it has sold a majority ownership stake in a 217-MW renewable energy portfolio to Northleaf Capital Partners, which is a leading independent global private markets manager.

The portfolio consists of the 50.4 MW Cotton Plains Wind and 151.2 MW Old Settler Wind facilities in Floyd County, Texas; and the 15.4 MWac Phantom Solar facility currently under construction on-site at U.S. Army Garrison Fort Hood in Killeen, Texas.

In a deal announced in January, the Defense Logistics Agency, on behalf of the Army, will purchase the power from Cotton Plains Wind and Phantom Solar to supply energy to Fort Hood. Old Settler Wind will generate enough clean electricity to power an additional 51,000 average U.S. homes. Apex will provide asset management services for all three facilities.

Fagen, Inc., is serving as the balance-of-plant contractor on the wind projects, and Phoenix Solar is leading construction of the solar component. Once complete, the wind projects will comprise a combined 84 General Electric (NYSE:GE) 2.4 MW turbines.

In separate transactions also closing today, Apex and Northleaf arranged debt financing and tax equity commitments for the projects. CohnReznick Capital Markets served as financial adviser to Apex.

“Direct investments in fully contracted wind and solar assets are on strategy for Northleaf’s program, as they offer predictable long-term cash flows and returns for our investors,” said Northleaf Director Jared Waldron. “The partnership with Apex is very strategic to us, given its track record as a leading renewable energy company.”

Northleaf has more than $7bn in infrastructure and private equity commitments under management. Northleaf is an investor in an Ormat Technologies geothermal power facility in Nevada.

“Apex is proud to help Fort Hood, the largest active-duty armored post in the United States, increase its energy resiliency and help accelerate our nation’s overall shift to clean energy,” added Apex President Mark Goodwin,. “The project achieves a number of ‘firsts,’ with on-site solar and off-site wind creating a hybrid solution to provide more than 50% of the annual load at Fort Hood, and at the same time saving taxpayers an estimated $168 million in direct energy costs over the life of the project,” Goodwind said.  

Apex Clean Energy builds, owns, and operates utility-scale wind and solar power facilities. Last year, Apex completed 1,042 MW of new wind capacity. Apex is also developing wind power projects in Virginia.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.