France's first offshore wind turbine has been installed in the Saint-Nazaire wind farm, bringing to fruition a project supported by Groupe BPCE as a financial stakeholder.
The project, managed by EDF Renewables and its Canadian partners Enbridge Inc. and CPP Investments, involves the installation by the end of 2022 of a wind farm of 80 turbines with a total capacity of 480 MW, capable of supplying the equivalent of 20% of the electricity used in the Loire-Atlantique region. To finance this venture, Natixis Corporate & Investment Banking, acting as the project’s lead arranger, coordinated the response of four Group companies: Caisse d'Epargne Bretagne Pays de Loire, Caisse d'Epargne Normandie, Caisse d'Epargne Ile-de-France, and Banque Populaire Grand Ouest. Groupe BPCE’s direct contribution stands at a total of €100 million.
This large-scale project, the source of new jobs for local communities, is helping to create an industrial sector dedicated to renewable energies – and, notably, marine energies – in France. Along with the future Fécamp and Courseulles wind farms (which are also financed by the Group), it is one of three offshore wind farm projects developed by EDF Renewables and its partners. It should be noted that France is aiming to ensure that between 32% and 35% of its final energy requirements is derived from renewable sources by 2028 (source: the Multi-Year Energy Plan published by the French Ministry for the Ecological and Inclusive Transition). This is a sector in which Groupe BPCE has boasted real expertise for many years with some twenty projects financed around the world, along with an ambition clearly defined in its BPCE 2024 strategic plan. It was in order to pool their expertise that the Caisses d'Epargne, working closely with Natixis Corporate & Investment Banking and BPCE Energéco, decided one year ago to create their first debt fund dedicated to financing renewable energy projects.
For further details about the Saint-Nazaire wind farm venture, click here.