By: Pivot Energy
May 9 2023
Today, Pivot Energy is excited to announce the closing of a ~$203 million financing facility to support a multi-state portfolio of distributed generation solar projects. Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), a division of First Citizens Bank, will lead the debt facilities, and Foss & Company (Foss) will make the initial tax equity investment. The 100 MWdc portfolio comprises 35 community solar and C&I projects planned to reach commercial operation (COD) between Q2 2023 and Q2 2024.
The financing is Pivot’s second portfolio of projects the company will build, own, and operate since its strategic acquisition by ECP in June 2021. The community solar subscribers in this portfolio include commercial clients including municipalities, healthcare facilities, food service, and retail; residential customers; and approximately 8,000 low-to-moderate income (LMI) households. This broader portfolio comprises the most extensive LMI community solar portfolio developed to date. It exhibits strategic diversity across project types, client offtake arrangements, and geographic reach with projects in Colorado, Minnesota, Illinois, New York, Hawaii, Maryland, and California. This geographic and customer diversity is beneficial in bringing clean solar energy to more Americans and strengthening the portfolio's long-term financial outlook.
This transaction is the first syndicated loan closing that SVB has led since the recent acquisition by First Citizens Bank. SVB pioneered community solar financing solutions and has remained a preeminent leader in the market. This transaction shows First Citizens Bank's commitment to continue lending to this vital space.
The debt transaction led by SVB includes a construction loan, tax equity bridge loan, and term loan. SVB circled the financing and will act as a Coordinating Lead Arranger (CLA), Sole Bookrunner and Administrative Agent with J.P. Morgan, National Bank of Canada, Bank United, Cadence and Comerica. J.P. Morgan acted as CLA and National Bank of Canada, Bank United, Cadence and Comerica acted as Lenders. National Bank of Canada provided the Letter of Credit Facility. This portfolio marks J.P. Morgan’s first debt financing in the community solar market.
Foss has provided the initial tax equity investment, which coupled with the debt financing, will enable Pivot to construct, operate, and own the portfolio. SVB and Foss & Company acted as the lead financing parties for Pivot’s inaugural portfolio that closed in 2022.
Bret Turner, Head of Project Finance, Business Development, and Innovation for Silicon Valley Bank, said, “Pivot Energy and ECP are front runners in transitioning our energy sources to affordable, clean, renewable energy for all, accelerating the growth of community solar across the United States. We are pleased to have led and structured this portfolio of solar projects across 35 sites in 7 key markets. We appreciate the confidence and trust placed in the team at SVB to continue moving this asset class forward.”
Bryen Alperin, Managing Director at Foss & Company, said, “We are delighted to partner with Pivot Energy on this innovative portfolio. This initiative will expand access to clean, affordable energy for small businesses and low-income households, reinforcing our commitment to invest in tax equity within under-served market segments. Furthermore, it is expected to generate substantial environmental benefits, aligning with our vision for a more sustainable future.”
Bret Labadie, Chief Financial Officer of Pivot Energy, said, “I am very proud of the entire Pivot team on this incredible accomplishment as we continue to build a strong operating portfolio base. This transaction additionally highlights that SVB continues to be a leader in the community solar financing space. I am thrilled to continue this partnership and show the broader community solar space that SVB and First Citizens Bank remain committed to this important asset class.”
“We are also very excited to grow our existing tax equity partnership with Foss with this portfolio” Labadie continued. “Foss remains a strategic partner for us as we continue to grow our distributed generation solar operating portfolios.”
CohnReznick Capital acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Pivot Energy on the transaction. Stoel Rives served as counsel for Pivot, Milbank served as counsel for SVB, and Winthrop & Weinstine served as counsel for Foss.
SunCentral, Pivot’s industry-leading proprietary community solar subscriber management and acquisition platform, will manage the portfolio through operations.
About Pivot Energy
Pivot Energy is a national solar provider that develops, finances, builds, owns, and manages solar and energy storage projects. Pivot offers a distributed energy platform that includes a range of services and software to serve the full solar ecosystem. Pivot is a Certified B-Corporation that proudly follows a corporate strategy aimed at positively impacting society as measured by Environmental stewardship, Social leadership, and responsible Governance (ESG) factors. Learn more at pivotenergy.net.
About Silicon Valley Bank
Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), a division of First Citizens Bank, is the bank of the world’s most innovative companies and investors. SVB provides commercial and private banking to individuals and companies in the technology, life science and healthcare, private equity, venture capital, and premium wine industries. SVB operates in centers of innovation throughout the United States, serving the unique needs of its dynamic clients with deep sector expertise, insights and connections. SVB’s parent company, First Citizens BancShares, Inc. (NASDAQ: FCNCA), is a top 20 U.S. financial institution with more than $200 billion in assets. First Citizens Bank, Member FDIC. Learn more at svb.com.
About Foss & Company
Founded in 1983, Foss & Company is a national tax equity investor and fund sponsor that has deployed over $8 billion in tax equity on behalf of insurance, banking, and other large corporate clients into historic rehabilitation projects, renewable energy and advanced energy production facilities. Foss & Company is a full-service advisor with proven expertise in helping our partners navigate the world of tax equity investments. For additional information, visit www.fossandco.com.
Together, solar and storage offer the unique ability to lower both demand and energy portions of a customer’s electricity bill.