Buffet Bet Comes Out for Solar

by Sean Kidney Warren Buffet is a famous proponent of value investing and he surely received a sign of the value in solar investments over fossil fuels last week. The MidAmerican Energy $850m Topaz solar project bond we mentioned a couple of weeks ago was so successful that a second tranche is expected to cover the remaining debt of the project. The offer was oversubscribed by $400m which would have mopped up the total $1.2bn of debt in the project; Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A) controls MidAmerican. In contrast, Buffet’s investment in $2bn of bonds from gas company...

Convertible Solar Bonds: Trina, SunPower Stoke Fire; Ascent Descends

by Sean Kidney Trina’s $150m 3.5% 5yr convertible solar bond In June Chinese solar manufacturer Trina announced the private placement of $150m of 5 year, 3.5% convertible bonds to “institutional investors” (no details provided). Trina weren’t clear how they would use the proceeds, but they are planning to build 400-500MW of solar plants over the rest of this year. Book-runners were Deutsche Bank, Barclays, J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs (Asia), with co-manager HSBC. SunPower issues $400m 7yr 0.875% (!) convertible solar bond That same month SunPower announced a private placement of $400 million, 7 year, 0.875% senior convertible bonds. What...
Greenium or discount

The Greenium: Growing Evidence of a Green Bond Premium

Highlights from the latest Q4 2017 Green Bond Report from the Climate Bonds Initiative: Two years of data observations examining green bond behavior in primary markets Climate Bonds Initiative has released the fourth “Green Bond Pricing in the Primary Market” report analysing the performance of green bonds issued in the period October-December 2017. This is the last quarterly report; future publications will be produced semi-annually allowing a more longtitudinal analysis as the market expands. The Q4 2017 report covers USD15.1bn or almost 40% of the face value of labelled green bonds issued in Q4. 15 EUR and 8 USD labelled green bonds are...
Covant 4Q 20 earnings

Covanta and Hannon Armstrong Earnings

by Tom Konrad, Ph.D. CFA Two more earnings notes I shared with my Patreon followers on February 18th. Covanta Holdings (CVA) Leading waste-to-energy firm Covanta Holdings (CVA) announced 2020 earnings today.  There will be a conference call tomorrow morning, but here is my high-level impression: The company managed well through Covid and ended the year within it's original pre-covid guidance.  Metals and energy prices, as well as increased maintenance capital expenditures were a drag on results, but  prices are improving and capital expenditures will fall in 2021. The company is conducting a strategic review which will likely result in the sale of some underperforming...

Green Asset-Backed Bond From Hannon Armstrong Has Measured GHG Savings

by the Climate Bonds Team Hannon Armstrong’s (HASI) second green ABS, $118.6m, will save 0.39 tons of GHG annually per $1,000!  ($100.5m, 4.28%, 19 yr, A and $18.1m, 5.00%, 19 yr, BBB) Hannon Armstrong (NYSE:HASI) closed its second green ABS bond (Sustainable Yield Bond) following its inaugural issuance in December 2013. The ABS was a private placement split into two tranches with different credit ratings (from Kroll Bond Credit Rating Agency): $100.5m with a rating of A and 4.28% interest rate, and $18.1m with a rating of BBB and 5.00% interest rate. Both tranches have a 19-year tenor....

Four Green Dividend Stocks That IPO’d In 2013

Tom Konrad CFA Disclosure: Long BEP, HASI. Canada’s stock exchanges have long had the lead as the place for energy infrastructure companies to list.  This includes green energy, as well as the fossil fueled sort.   Because Canada’s reporting rules are somewhat less stringent, and its markets less liquid than those in the US, the large number of offerings trade at lower valuations and higher yields than do their (few) US-listed equivalents. In fact, it was the promise of a higher valuation which led Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners (NYSE:BEP, TSX:BEP-UN) to obtain its US listing on June...

Investors Awaken to NextEra YieldCo

by Debra Fiakas CFA Last week NextEra Energy Partners, LP (NEP:  NYSE) reported financial results for the third quarter ending September 2015.  The numbers were released in along with quarter results from its parent, Florida-based utility NextEra Energy, Inc. (NEE:  NYSE).  The partnership is the operating arm of clean energy projects originated by the NextEra parent.  The ‘yieldco’ as these operating entities have been kindly dubbed by shareholders, delivered $1.0 million in reported net income, but operating cash flow was a whopping $36 million in the quarter. The consensus estimate had been for $0.24 in earnings per...

The Status of The Yieldco

by Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Last week I delivered the keynote at Yieldcon USA, a conference put on by Solar Plaza entirely focused on Yieldcos. (Yieldcos are companies that own clean energy assets such as solar and wind farms and use the cash flows to pay a high rate of current income to investors.) Given all that's gone on in the space in the last few weeks, the conference could not have been more timely. You can find the presentation here and embedded below:
power production from wind and solar

List of High Yield Alternative Energy Stocks

This is a list of renewable and alternative energy stocks with dividend or distribution yields above 4%.  The list includes most Yieldcos (high distribution companies that own renewable energy operations), but is not limited to Yieldcos. Some Yieldcos may be excluded if their yield is below 4%. Atlantica Yield plc (AY) Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. (AQN, AQN.TO) Bluefield Solar Income Fund Ltd. (BSIF.L) Brookfield Renewable Partners L.P. (BEP) Clearway Energy, Inc. (CWEN,CWEN-A) Companhia Energética de Minas Gerais (CIG) Covanta Holding Corporation (CVA) Crius Energy Trust (KWH-UN.TO, CRIUF) Enviva Partners, LP (EVA) Foresight Solar Fund plc (FSFL.L) GATX Corporation Series A (GMTA) Global X YieldCo ETF (YLCO) Greencoat UK Wind PLC (UKW.L) Green...

Fifteen Clean Energy Yield Cos, Created Unequal

Tom Konrad CFA Renewable Energy Investing Grows Up. In January I predicted 2014 would be the year "renewable energy finance comes of age."  Here's how Jennifer Runyon quoted me on Renewable Energy World: Konrad believes that 2014 will be a great year for renewable energy finance, he said.  He said that we saw the beginning of it in 2013 with the securitization of a bond by Solar City (SCTY) and pointed to Hannon Armstrong’s (HASI) securitization of an energy efficiency bond in late December 2013 as another indicator that renewable energy...

Eneti and Brookfield Renewable Earnings

By Tom Konrad, Ph.D. CFA Here are a couple earnings notes I shared last week with my Patreon followers. Eneti, Inc. (NETI) - formerly Scorpio Bulkers (SALT) Eneti completed its name and ticker change on February 8th. New ticker is NETI (formerly Scorpio Bulkers (SALT), which I recently wrote about here. Highlights from February 2nd earnings report: 37 of the 47 vessels owned at the 3rd quarter have been sold or have completed sale agreements. Net asset value is $23.94/share. Since most assets are cash or vessels held for sale, this number is basically accurate. The stock is still a good buy...

Climate Bond Standard to be Released This Week

Tom Konrad CFA Conserving the planet for conservative investors. Investing in clean energy stocks has an (often well-deserved) reputation for risk.  Although energy efficiency and more inclusive progressive energy indexes have held up fairly well over the last few years, the performance of narrower clean energy sectors has been dismal, and some industry observers feel that the declines in wind and solar are structural (and hence permanent) as opposed to cyclical (and therefor temporary.) This presents a conundrum for investors with long time horizons who not only need their investments to earn a steady return...

Developments in the Solar Corporate Bond Market

by Corporate Bonder The global bond market is huge. Data from the Bank for International Settlements shows that the total size of the global debt securities market (domestic and international securities) was $99.5 trillion as at June 2011, of which $89.9 trillion were notes and bonds. Governments accounted for $43.7 trillion of outstanding debt securities, financial organizations $43.8 trillion, corporations $11.0 trillion and international organizations $1.0 trillion. Against that, Bloomberg has estimated that there are $230bn outstanding of fixed-interest securities that meet their “green bonds” definition. And of course the IEA talks of $1 trillion of investment a...

One Week, Three YieldCo Deals. Are More Buyouts on the Horizon?

by Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA It's been a busy several days in the YieldCo space. On February 5, 8point3 Energy Partners (NASD:CAFD) announced an agreement to be acquired by an infrastructure investment fund managed by Capital Dynamics. While I was still writing an article on why the sale price was at a virtually unheard of discount relative to the stock market price, two more YieldCo deals were announced: NRG Energy (NYSE:NRG) agreed to sell its sponsorship stake in NRG Yield (NYSE:NYLD and NYSE:NYLD/A) to Global Infrastructure Partners, and YieldCo TerraForm Power (NASD:TERP) made an offer to buy out Spanish YieldCo Saeta Yield (Madrid:SAY) at a 20 percent...
TERP BEP price spread

Why is Terraform Power Trading at a Premium to the Brookfield Renewable Merger Value?

Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA A reader asked: Read your recent article on Pattern Energy (PEGI). Great summary and thoughts. Would like to ask your view on TERP potential takeover by BEP (via shares swap) and whether you reckon the recent run-up on TERP is too excessive? It's a good question, and one that Robbert Manders on Seeking Alpha did a thorough analysis of here.  For the details of the merger, I refer you to his work. While his analysis is careful and complete, I disagree with his conclusion.  TERP shares are not trading at a significant premium to the merger value.  The reason is...

New Green Bonds From Terraform And Goldwind

by the Climate Bonds Team Second green bond from TerraForm to finance wind power acquisition, $300m 10yr, 6.125% s/a coupon, BB-/B1 TerraForm Power Operating , the yieldco spin off from SunEdison , has issued a second green bond shortly after tapping its inaugural green bond for a further $150m (making their first green bond a whopping $950m!). The new $300m green bond has 10-year tenor and semi-annual coupon of 6.125%, and was issued in the US private placement market. It is sub-investment grade with a rating of BB- from S&P and B1...
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