Herbert Smith Freehills has cemented its reputation as the pre-eminent firm for project finance in the renewables sector across Australia and New Zealand after topping the Inframation Deals league tables for 2017.
The firm has dominated the league tables for both deal count and deal value, advising on more than double the number of deals than its nearest competitor and on transactions with a combined value of $5.5 billion, almost $2.5 billion more than the next firm. This exceptional result is the result of the firm’s work on transactions relating to the development of the largest renewables projects in Australia.
Significant renewables deals that the firm acted on in 2017 include the Coopers Gap Wind Farm, Ross River Solar Farm and the innovative Kennedy Energy Park. The firm’s longstanding clients in renewable energy have made significant investment throughout the year and continue to see growth across the market.
Commenting on the state of the market, Herbert Smith Freehills’ Head of Renewables for Asia Pacific, Toby Anderson, said, “The renewables market in Australia continues to see significant growth for investors, and this year’s results reflect the ongoing buoyancy we are seeing in the sector. Innovative projects such as Kennedy Energy Park, which combines battery storage as well being co-sited with wind and solar, reflects the willingness of investors to pursue hybrid configurations resulting in greater availability.”
Herbert Smith Freehills partner Gerard Pike added “In 2018, we expect to see continued growth and investment in large-scale wind, solar and battery projects in all Australian jurisdictions underpinned by State and Territory reverse auctions and PPA schemes and a growing number of corporate PPAs. There is significant equity and debt funding available for these renewables projects from the liquid commercial bank market, CEFC, ARENA and numerous Australian and international equity investors who are all keen to invest in the growing renewables sector in Australia.”