SPI Solar, a leading vertically integrated photovoltaic (“PV”) solar developer and engineering, procurement and construction (“EPC”) services provider, announced today that it and its majority shareholder, LDK Solar (“LDK”), has entered into an agreement with KDC Solar LLC (“KDC Solar”) to basically manage a significant portion of KDC Solar’s portfolio of solar energy facility (“SEF”) projects in New Jersey and New York.
The 3-year agreement establishes a minimum commitment for KDC Solar to offer 150 megawatts of SEF projects for SPI’s consideration, and sets as a goal for KDC Solar and SPI to potentially develop a total of 300 megawatts in SEF projects across New Jersey and New York.
History of the Deal
In December 2010, SPI announced it had been selected to build a 5-megawatt SEF at the White Rose Foods facility located in Carteret, New Jersey. KDC Solar is the Managing Member of this project. Following the close of this transaction, SPI and KDC Solar began discussing a broader preferred provider arrangement which led to this agreement. According to KDC Solar, its current pipeline in the New Jersey market already exceeds 150 megawatts. If fully developed, this pipeline alone is expected to generate approximately $600 million of new EPC and O&M business for SPI over the 3-year term of the agreement. As the Northeast market continues to develop, and KDC Solar pursues additional pipeline opportunities in the region, up to 300 megawatts of projects could come to fruition under the agreement.
“We are very happy to be working with SPI and LDK,” said Hal Kamine, CEO of KDC Solar, “SPI’s reputation for designing and building low-cost, high quality commercial solar energy facilities for businesses across the nation, coupled with LDK’s high quality solar panels, will benefit New Jersey and New York,” Mr. Kamine stated. “We focus on “behind the meter” projects of 2 MWs and larger that supply long term, inexpensive solar electricity to businesses and institutions, which, in turn, bring a significantly reduced cost-of-operation to our customers. Our goal is to supply 100% of our customer’s electric needs from our facilities. The bottom line is that we lower a significant cost to do business for our customers through clean solar power, which preserves and creates jobs,” Mr. Kamine concluded. KDC Solar has approximately 18 megawatts of SEFs under construction at present and is supported by an allocation of $225 million in equity from Diamond Castle Holdings, a New York-based private equity fund with more than $1.8 billion of committed capital under management.
“This agreement is a perfect blend of talent, skill sets and opportunity,” said Stephen Kircher, CEO of SPI. “It highlights the benefits available to SPI as a result of our recent transaction with LDK. Our alliance with LDK now allows SPI to take on multiple projects of greater scope and scale,” Mr. Kircher continued. “The KDC Solar agreement underscores the importance and value the SPI/LDK relationship represents when it comes to leveraging LDK’s vertical integration and the low-cost, high-quality products and financing capabilities LDK adds to our development offerings. Additionally, we are pursuing many other large-scale projects that should continue to accelerate our pipeline and revenue into the next few years,” Mr. Kircher concluded.
“LDK is proud to participate as a partner to this agreement by supporting the financing of these projects and supplying essential products through SPI for KDC Solar,” said Xiaofeng Peng, LDK’s Chairman and CEO. “Our investment in SPI as a downstream development company is proving successful for both of our companies and those we work with as well,” Mr. Peng stated. “We look forward to expanding our distribution throughout North America and assisting in job retention and new job creation with every new solar energy facility SPI develops.”