Energy Investors Funds has acquired the largest equity stake in Astoria Energy II LLC, a company created to develop, construct, own and operate a new natural gas-fired power plant in the Astoria neighborhood of Queens. No financial terms were disclosed.
Energy Investors Funds (“EIF”), an established private equity fund manager that invests in the U.S. energy and electric power sector, today announced that its United States Power Fund III, L.P. (“USPF III”) has closed an investment in Astoria Energy II LLC (“Astoria Energy II”), a limited liability company created to develop, construct, own and operate a new natural gas-fired power plant in Astoria, Queens Borough, New York City. USPF III will own the largest equity stake, in terms of percentage, in the project. Other financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
In July 2008, Astoria Energy II was awarded a 20-year tolling agreement by the New York Power Authority (“NYPA”), a New York State public authority, for the supply of energy and capacity from an approximately 550 MW combined cycle thermal power plant located at the Astoria site. Construction has commenced and is expected to be completed by Summer 2011. Once completed, the new facility will provide electrical power for NYPA’s customers, which include several major governmental customers in the metropolitan area.
“We’re very excited to be a lead investor in Astoria Energy II, which we have backed since its inception,” said Andrew Schroeder, Senior Partner at EIF. “This project enjoys tremendous support from New York state and city officials because it will provide cleaner energy at a lower price to NYPA’s customers. With its long-term tolling agreement, Astoria Energy II perfectly fits the profile of our investment strategy and we look forward to helping see it through to completion.”
“EIF has been an excellent strategic and financial partner throughout this process and we’re thrilled to have closed the transaction,” said Chuck McCall, Chief Executive Officer of Astoria Energy II. “It’s a credit to the project that it was able to attract such a high level of quality sponsor backing.”
The other equity partners in Astoria Project Partners II LLC are: SNC-Lavalin Generation Inc., SUEZ Energy Astoria II, LLC, a subsidiary of GDF SUEZ Energy North America, Inc., and JEMB Astoria II, LLC.
Approximately $1 billion in financing for the project has been closed with 13 international financial institutions jointly led by Natixis, WestLB AG, Export Development Canada, Calyon, Societe Generale Americas Securities, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ and Union Bank NA.
About Energy Investors Funds
EIF was founded in 1987 as the first private equity fund manager dedicated exclusively to the independent power and electric utility industry. Its consistent, proven investment strategy is to create geographically and technologically diversified portfolios of electric power-related assets that provide superior risk-adjusted equity returns with current cash flow and capital appreciation. As an investment manager, EIF seeks to mitigate commodity risk (fuel and electricity) by focusing primarily on acquiring power assets with long-term off-take contracts. EIF has mobilized over $3.4 billion in capital raised in seven funds, and currently manages four private equity funds from its offices in Boston, New York, and San Francisco. These funds have made over 100 diversified investments with a combined underlying asset value exceeding $7 billion. EIF controls 4,000 MW of operating power assets with another 2,200 MW of power assets under development or construction. For more information visit www.eif.com.