2019 Event Agenda

  • 08:30

    Delegate Registration & Networking Breakfast Sponsored By DLA Piper

  • 09:30

    Opening remarks & Inframation Welcome

  • 09:35

    Opening Panel Discussion: De-Risking Unsubsidised Renewables in Mature and New Markets

    Europe's subsidy-free renewables market is continuing to grow. Though there are doubts around the extent to which corporate and utility demand for PPAs will match the supply of clean energy projects in Europe's pipeline, meaning investors might have to get comfortable with fully merchant renewables projects going forward. 

    A significant portion of unsubsidised deal activity is to be discovered in Europe, with other markets starting to become prominent on countries such as Finland and Portugal, which are seen as potential new hotbeds for PPAs and merchant deals. Meanwhile, the big renewables markets like Germany and France are yet to see unsubsidised development taking off at scale – will this change soon?

    In this panel, investors and lenders will discuss where they see the next big opportunities in Europe's subsidy-free markets. 

    • Are too many operators are chasing too few corporate PPAs, what are some other options for investors and developers looking to de-risk exposure to merchant prices? 
    • What are the biggest challenges in structuring the financing of an unsubsidised renewables project? 
    • How can we best manage price volatility in fully merchant projects?
    • In a subsidy-free world, will different markets be more equal? Are some less mature European markets becoming more investable or will focus remain on markets where a large number of unsubsidised deals have already closed?    
    • Country focuses: Finland, Germany, France, Portugal – what are the drivers for subsidy-free renewables and what are their challenges?  
    • What are the opportunities and challenges in the CEE region?
    Lorena Ciciriello
    Lorena Ciciriello
    Head of Debt Financing, NextEnergy Capital
  • 10:20

    Keynote Presentation: Bringing Offshore Wind to the Next Level

    Offshore wind capacity has skyrocketed in the past decade and is transforming energy markets around the world. The sector has attracted significant investments from infrastructure and renewables funds, particularly in Europe, but with subsidies for the technology falling quickly it has created some question marks around who are best placed to invest in the future offshore wind pipeline. Meanwhile non-European offshore wind markets are booming, and floating wind turbines are increasingly attracting investor interest.  

    In this presentation the speaker will give their view on what's next for offshore wind and where financial investors can play the biggest role as the market develops. 

  • 10:45

    Morning Refreshments and Networking Break Sponsored By DLAPiper

  • 11:15

    Panel Discussion: Corporate PPAs – disrupting energy?

    Europe's corporate PPA market has grown rapidly in just a few years, and in recent months a rising number of corporates have launched tenders to find renewables projects to cover some of their energy needs. Including Tesco's quest for up to 400MW of clean energy; Google's Europe-wide PPA and AB InBev's 15-year deal with developer Lightsource. Despite some successes, other tenders have taken longer to complete, or the processes have stalled, showing there is still a mismatch in pricing expectations of developers and corporates. 

    In this panel a number of corporates will give their view on the European PPA market and how they see it develop in the coming years. 

    • State of the market: is the universe of corporates looking to sign long-term PPAs expanding?  
    • Are corporates getting what they want? Examples of tender processes and their outcomes.  
    • How to find a pricing sweet spot.  
    • The emergence of new PPA structures.
  • 12:00

    Panel Discussion: Utility Strategies in 2020 and Beyond

    European utilities have had to find ways to adapt to changes in the energy markets in the past decade. Many utilities have now turned their focus away from the major disposal programmes that generated acquisition opportunities for funds. Instead, utilities are themselves in an acquisitive mood while also working to boost organic growth in more nascent sectors such as electric vehicles, energy management and efficiency solutions. These strategies can also create opportunities for third-party investors, for example in the partnership between Enel's new business unit Enel X and Infracapital.

    Panellists will discuss how utilities are positioning themselves to grow in the next decade, particularly in renewables and new energy technologies and solutions and explore the types of partnerships with infrastructure and energy investors that could emerge in coming years.    

    • Which utility strategies best capture value – what is the ultimate utility portfolio for 2020 and beyond?
    • What are your biggest growth and investment areas in the next 1-3 years? 
    • In which areas might you look for investment partners? What is the role, in your view, of funds and institutional investors in financing energy generation?   
    • Outlook for subsidy-free renewable energy: which geographies are you focusing on? Who will be the long-term owners of zero-subsidy renewables?
    Martin Bacher
    Martin Bacher
    Executive Director, Head of Energy & Utilities M&A, Raiffeisen Bank International AG
  • 12:45

    Networking Lunch Sponsored By DLA Piper

  • 14:00

    Presentation: Investing in renewables in a time of rapid change

    Massive investment in renewables is needed if we are to meet the Paris climate goals. But we are in a time of rapid change with high levels of uncertainty. Traditionally long-term infrastructure investments have been made in a more stable environment. What is needed to make the required investment happen? How can we ensure that enough capital flows into the sector to enable the build out required?
    This session will explore these issues and also gather answers from the audience on key questions facing the sector.

  • 14:25

    Keynote Presentation: Enabling subsidy-free renewables through asset optimisation

    • For grid-connected renewables, available capacity on the distribution network is limited and grid connection can form a material component of the cost of generated electricity. Optimising the use of existing infrastructure can improve project economics and help to facilitate the development of subsidy-free renewable generation, enabling greater and speedier penetration of low-carbon energy.
    • A significant number of existing onshore wind farms can present an attractive opportunity for co-located solar farm investments.  Each individual wind farm will present unique features that influence its suitability, such as export capacity and capacity factor. But careful economic and technical analysis can determine the optimum commercial solution.
  • 14:50

    Afternoon refreshments and networking break sponsored by DLA Piper

  • 15:20

    Panel Discussion: How Lenders' Renewables Strategies are Evolving

    Despite some reluctance, the most active renewables lenders across Europe have gained experience in lending to zero-subsidy projects in recent years. Spain's first subsidy-free wind farm Goya secured EUR 170m long-term debt from a consortium of Spanish banks and the EIB and most Nordic corporate PPA-backed deals have either project finance or bonds in place. Though lenders' approach to financing the new pipeline of clean energy projects – and their appetite for risk – vary greatly. In this panel, panellists will discuss how the role of lenders in the renewables market is evolving. 

    • What are the main opportunities you're seeing as a lender in the shift towards subsidy-free renewables?
    • What are some key challenges you've faced when financing or considering financing zero-subsidy projects?
    • PPAs vs merchant – the lenders perspective. 
    • Is the long-term expectation that less senior debt will be available for renewables projects? Or can projects be structured and de-risked sufficiently on a merchant basis?  
    Jing Liu
    Jing Liu
    Director – Sector Lead of Power & Utilities, Global Structure Finance – EMEA, SMBC
  • 16:05

    On-Stage Interview: The Middle East - is the Region’s Renewables Enthusiasm Built On Firm Enough Foundations?

    The drive to diversify the Middle East’s sources of energy has long been expected to provide a new pipeline of renewables deals. This year could almost be said to have been the region’s “Big Bang” for solar, wind and other projects. At the start of the year, Saudi Arabia set plans to install no less than 58.7 GW of renewable power generating capacity by 2030 with 60 prequalified bidders announced for the 1.5 GW second round of the country’s solar IPP scheme. In the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi received expressions of interest for the 2 GW Al-Dhafra project, which at 2 GW is the world’s largest single-site PV project. Kuwait’s National Petroleum Company is tendering the 1 GW PV solar scheme. Along with Dubai starting the 900MW fifth phase of its Mohammed bin Rashid solar park. 

    Though the dash to get a slice of this potentially huge and lucrative market takes place against an international political background, which while never less than challenging, has in recent years become a great deal more fraught. The scale of the programmes which have been proposed and the tight time frame for their completion, should also give all participants pause. 

    • To what extent are the region’s renewables plans achievable and has an investment environment been created that will attract the necessary backing?
    • What are the structuring challenges specific to the region when securing funding for renewables projects?
    • Are the region’s low tariffs sustainable?
    • How does the dominance of local players affect opportunities to invest in the region’s projects?
    • How should political development both with and without the region be factored into these deals?
    Adel ElSolh
    Adel ElSolh
    Managing Director, Head of Infrastructure Finance for Middle East, Turkey & Africa (META), Natixis
  • 16:35

    Close of Conference and Cocktail Reception Sponsored By DLA Piper