Green Bank inks four solar deals

Green Bank President Alfred Griffin.

NY Green Bank, the state’s $1 billion energy financing arm, has completed four new deals that will encourage job creation and private investment. Combined, the efforts are expected to facilitate 6,200 residential rooftop solar installations across New York, as well as eight ground-based solar installations for commercial and industrial use.

The Green Bank – part of the 10-year, $5 billion Clean Energy Fund, the state’s commitment to clean-energy market growth – is participating in two nine-digit deals with an assortment of international financers, the governor’s office said, while taking the lead on a pair of domestic deals.

In one deal, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority-managed bank is part of a “consortium of capital providers” led by London-based asset manager Investec providing $340 million to Sunrun, a San Francisco-based solar designer, installer and financer in the midst of a national expansion. The transaction is expected to generate up to $140 million in New York State solar development projects, according to the governor’s office.

The Green Bank is also participating in a transaction with DZ Bank of Germany, with $200 million going to California-based Solar Mosaic, a finance firm that specializes in no-money-down solar-project financing. That deal is predicted to generate $40 million in residential rooftop installations across New York.

The bank has also established a “standardized approach to construction and post-construction project finance” with BQ Energy, a Poughkeepsie-based renewable-energy developer that specializes in solar development on landfills. The idea is to “broaden the availability of solar to businesses that have had limited access to financing,” according to a statement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and the first project in a projected $30 million portfolio is already planned for a landfill in the mid-state Town of Patterson.

The fourth new deal, a $7.5 million financing arrangement with New York City-based energy software company Sealed Inc., will affect both the tech company’s expansion efforts and some 400 energy-conscious homeowners, according to Cuomo’s office.

“New York is a national leader in combatting climate change and investing in clean energy technology to grow the state’s economy,” Cuomo said in a statement. “These projects will not only help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect the environment, but ensure the state continues to reach its ambitious goal of 50 percent renewable energy by 2030.”

Since launching in 2014, the Green Bank has closed several similar deals, including an investment that helped Ronkonkoma-based Level Solar complete 840 residential installations, hire more than 50 employees and expand its customer base off Long Island, according to the governor’s office.

The bank has also had a hand in helping Brooklyn-based United Wind raise more than $200 million in private capital, allowing the company to begin construction of new turbines in five upstate counties.

With those and other success stories already funded, the four new transaction will help “make energy cleaner and less expensive for New York homeowners and businesses,” according to Green Bank President Alfred Griffin, especially by spurring further investments.

“The offerings facilitated by the Green Bank enable New York-based contractors and installers to grow their businesses by providing New Yorkers with more clean energy choices,” Griffin said. “Each of the Green Bank’s transactions utilizes a financing structure that encourages standardization and scaling of portfolios, which will lead to greater private market participation.”