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Herbert Smith Freehills has advised Cherry Tree Wind Farm Pty Ltd on the development of the Cherry Tree Wind Farm project. 

The 57.6MW Infigen Energy development was acquired by John Laing under an innovative Capital Lite structure in conjunction with the project achieving financial close on 18 December 2018.

Cherry Tree Wind Farm will be developed approximately 15km south-east of Seymour, in Victoria. Construction is due to begin in early 2019, with the wind farm expected to be fully operational by May 2020.

Vestas has been appointed as the engineering, procurement and construction contractor and the operation and maintenance contractor for the wind farm. AusNet Services will be the distribution network services provider.

The project was also successful in securing a separate offtake agreement with Infigen Energy.  Infigen Energy will also manage the construction for John Laing and provide ongoing asset management services.

Herbert Smith Freehills partner Toby Anderson and senior associates Laurelle Ko and Daniel Ficyk led the team advising on the project development aspects of the wind farm, including EPC and O&M arrangements with Vestas.

Senior associate David Ong assisted on the procurement arrangements for the transmission line. 

Partner Heidi Asten and solicitor Thomas Ellicott advised on planning matters and senior associates Hannah Stevens, Sebastian Renato and solicitor Emma Larkin advised on land matters.

Partner Kris Percy and solicitor Julia Hollis advised in respect of the grid connection arrangements with AusNet Services and AEMO.

Partner Gerard Pike and senior associate Caroline Rowe advised Cherry Tree Wind Farm in respect of the completion and financial close process.

Separately, Infigen Energy was advised by partner David Ryan and solicitor Melisa Chan in relation to the equity sale to John Laing and by partner Peter Davis and solicitor Kai Ito in relation to the offtake agreement and management services agreement with Cherry Tree Wind Farm.

Mr Pike said, “It is great to see Cherry Tree Wind Farm finally achieve financial close. Cherry Tree is a Victorian wind farm which is close to electricity load centres and will be a valuable clean energy asset in the State’s energy mix.”

“We congratulate Infigen Energy and John Laing on reaching financial close and look forward to seeing the project move into the construction phase”.

Allens Linklaters advised John Laing.

This deal is another example of Herbert Smith Freehills’ market-leading work in the renewable energy sector. Other recent examples include advising:

•         Tilt Renewables on the development of the 336MW Dundonnell Wind Farm in Victoria;

•         the financiers on the Finley Solar Farm in New South Wales;

•         Pacific Hydro on the A$115 million project financing for Haughton Solar Farm in Queensland;

•         Total Eren in respect of the development of the 256MW Stage 1 of the Kiamal Solar Farm in Victoria; and

•         Synergy on the establishment of Bright Energy Investments, a fund (with co-investment from DIF and CBUS) for the development of renewable energy assets in WA, including the acquisition and construction financing of the Greenough River Solar Farm and the acquisition financing of the Albany-Grasmere Wind Farm.