Standard Bank named `Bank of the Year’ for Middle East & Africa at 2014 PFI Awards Ceremony

Feb 05, 2015

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Standard Bank has been awarded Middle East & Africa Bank of the Year in the 2014 Project Finance International (PFI) Awards in recognition of its key role in arranging some of the most strategically significant power infrastructure transactions on the African continent last year.

Africa’s biggest lender by assets, Standard Bank was recognised for its role in arranging a €625.3 million facility for the Lake Turkana wind farm project in Kenya; the structuring of USD893 million in funding for a 340 Megawatt (MW) power plant in Ghana; as well as arranging of USD 170 million in debt to build a 118 MW gas-fired power plant in Mozambique. The PFI awards, one of the most prestigious accolades in the financial services industry, were presented at an awards ceremony in London last night.

“These awards reaffirm Standard Bank’s position as one of the pre-eminent project finance houses in Africa,” said George Kotsovos, Executive Vice President: Power and Infrastructure Finance at Standard Bank Group. “Standard Bank’s extensive sector knowledge, our footprint in Africa, along with our key local knowledge and expertise in each of the markets in which we operate, enables us to originate and finance some of the most exciting projects on the continent. We’re seeing a marked increase in project finance activity in Africa and that certainly bodes well for the continent’s economic future.”

Standard Bank’s role as co-mandated lead arranger on the Lake Turkana Wind Power project saw it join forces with 11 other financiers to facilitate the development, financing and construction of a 300MW wind farm approximately 10km east of Lake Turkana in north-eastern Kenya. The project is the largest single private investment in Kenya’s history and is expected to contribute approximately 20% of Kenya’s current installed electricity generating capacity upon completion.

Standard Bank also acted as co-mandated lead arranger on the Cenpower project in Ghana, a  gas and oil-fired, combined-cycle power generation plant near the Tema heavy industrial area, which lies about 24 km east of Accra. The project is one of the biggest in West Africa and will see generated energy sold to the Electricity Company Ghana (“ECG”), the national off-taker, through a 25 year Power Purchase Agreement.

Another key deal that was recognised in the 2014 PFI awards was the USD 170 million in debt financing to Gigawatt, an Independent Power Producer in Mozambique, to help build a gas-fired power plant in the south of the country. Standard Bank was the sole mandated lead arranger on the project, which will see Gigawatt supply 12.4% of Mozambique’s total power demand upon its completion. The transaction is the final piece of the puzzle in unlocking the complete value chain of gas to power in Mozambique – from the onshore gas reserves and central processing facility in Pande and Temane, to the pipeline company (ROMPCO) to the gas distributor (Matola Gas Company) and ultimately to Gigawatt for the sale of electricity to EDM. Standard Bank has been involved in each of these projects and Gigawatt is a transaction which has capitalised on our Mozambican franchise.

“These projects are significant enablers of power generation for Africa and speak to our ability to mobilise optimal funding solutions for our clients and the continent’s infrastructure requirements,” said Mr Kotsovos. “Our credibility as a Pan African bank rests on our ability to provide finance right across the spectrum of African projects and we are grateful to our clients and our financing partners who have worked with us to develop and finance these projects”.

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