Cypress Creek closes financing on its largest solar project yet

cypress creek renewables

Cypress Creek Renewables closed financing on Shakes, a 270-MW solar project located in Dimmit County, Texas. The Shakes solar project is currently under construction and expects to reach commercial operation during the second half of 2022. Cypress Creek will be the long-term owner and operator of the project.

Morgan Stanley, through one of its subsidiaries, is the tax equity provider and Nord/LB, Rabobank, Helaba and National Bank of Canada provided the project finance debt. The energy and renewable energy credits generated by the project have been sold to Axpo US, an affiliate of Axpo Solutions, an international leader in the development of tailor-made energy solutions for its customers.

“At 270 MW, Shakes is a cornerstone project for Cypress Creek Renewables and demonstrates our commitment to executing on major projects in support of the energy transition,” said Sarah Slusser, CEO of Cypress Creek. “We’re thrilled to join forces again with Morgan Stanley, Nord/LB, and Rabobank, and new partners for us, Axpo US, Helaba, and National Bank of Canada, to complete financing on a project that will generate enough power for nearly 40,000 homes annually. As the long-term owner and operator of Shakes, we also look forward to continuing to build our relationships throughout the community.”

Completing the financing of Shakes required collaboration and innovative solutions.

Jeremy Wodakow, Managing Director and Head of Axpo US, said, “Risk appetite and risk mitigation requirements have been evolving following the market dislocation caused by the winter storm in Texas. Working closely together with Cypress Creek, we were able to develop a hedging solution that satisfies all stakeholders involved in the project and enabled financial close. Axpo is committed to employing its significant experience in crafting customized energy solutions to continue to support the energy transition in Texas and throughout the US.”

Cypress Creek is a leader in the Texas solar market with 1,380MW developed in the state. The Shakes project is expected to create 320 to 450 construction jobs and generate $35 million in new property tax revenue over the life of the project for local schools and communities.

Jorge Iragorri, Head of Alternative Financing and Managing Director of Morgan Stanley, said, “We are pleased to partner with Cypress Creek Renewables to provide the investment for Shakes, as we continue to advance the transformation of the U.S. energy grid towards a lower carbon future.”

Sondra Martinez, Managing Director of Nord/LB, said, “Nord/LB is thrilled to support Cypress Creek with the Shakes financing which utilized a very innovative hedge structure. The transaction builds on our long-standing relationship and history of working together on creative financing solutions.”

Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as Cypress Creek’s legal counsel for the project financing, Mayer Brown LLP served as Morgan Stanley’s legal counsel, Winston & Strawn LLP served as legal counsel for the lenders and Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP served as Axpo’s legal counsel. PCL Construction is the Engineering, Procurement and Construction provider.

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