8minutenergy Renewables, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, and an affiliate of Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners have entered into a joint venture to provide equity capital to support 8minutenergy's 10.7GW pipeline of utility solar + storage projects. The joint venture, along with investment from 8minutenergy CEO, Dr. Tom Buttgenbach, provides over $200 million in capital commitments.
"We thank J.P. Morgan and Upper Bay for bringing the long-term focus and financial resources to enable us to unleash the full potential of our pipeline and incredibly talented team," said Buttgenbach, 8minutenergy's President & CEO. "We have been the largest and most successful solar developer in California, and have expanded our cost leadership across the U.S., developing a solar and storage project pipeline of 10.7GW. A testament to our low-cost leadership is the 420MW Eagle Shadow Mountain Solar plant in Nevada, which at 2.3 cents/kWh fixed for 25 years, holds the record for lowest-price solar PPA in the nation. In Texas, which is a purely price-driven competitive market, we will start construction of our 280MW Holstein 1 power plant in the second quarter of 2019."
"We've been very impressed with the 8minutenergy team and their ability to deliver sustainable returns through their utility-scale solar projects. 8minutenergy has a premier development process that consistently delivers attractive solar projects with long-term, contracted cash flows," said Michael Lehman, Managing Director and Portfolio Manager of J.P. Morgan Asset Management.
"We are very excited to solidify a partnership with 8minutenergy as clean energy is a key focus for our firm. The 8minutenergy team offers a strong track record with over 2GW of PPAs awarded and a deep pipeline of more than 10GW of projects," said Mario Maselli, Managing Partner and President of Upper Bay. 8minutenergy also announced that Alex O'Cinneide will rejoin the Company's Advisory Board.
"I am excited to rejoin the advisory board of the company as it continues its extraordinary growth path. I look forward to leveraging the experience of financing utility-scale energy storage projects for the company, gained through running the first publicly traded fund established to invest in diversified utility-scale energy storage projects," said O'Cinneide. "I've remained incredibly impressed with 8minutenergy's team, and I look forward to working with them to continue solar + storage's momentum as the best energy source of the future."
Scotia Bank and Bank of America Merrill Lynch were the lead financial advisors to the joint venture transaction. Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman; Winston & Strawn LLP; Orrick, Herrington, and Sutcliffe acted as legal counsel to Buttgenbach and 8minutenergy. Proskauer Rose LLP and Bracewell LLP acted as legal counsel to J.P. Morgan and Upper Bay respectively.