First mezzanine financing for wind

German Volkswind, a wind project company based in Ganderkesee, has raised EUR 10 million in mezzanine financing and becomes one of the first wind companies to enter the institutional mezzanine capital market. Volkswind was advised on the transaction by London finance house Ethos Partners, which has specialised in renewable energy. Ethos' Frank Esslinger says Volkswind's creditworthiness, confirmed by a rating of A- from Hermes, part of the Allianz group, "contributed considerably to the swift placement of the mezzanine capital with a specialised institutional mezzanine investor focussed on middle-sized German companies." The money raised will be used as "equity replacement" to finance specific wind projects, says Matthias Stommel, co-owner of Volkswind. The company, founded in 1993, employs 22 people and has about 100 MW of wind in its asset portfolio, with a further 100 MW permitted for construction in France as well as projects in the German states of Thüringia and Saxony Anhalt and activities in Spain. Mezzanine finance combines elements of both debt and equity.