• Sustainability
    • Transition to Net Zero
    • Sustainable Financing
    • The Future of Energy

How is Spain’s Solarpack seeking to broaden access to clean, affordable energy?

  • Article

Find out how Spanish solar farm developer Solarpack is using sustainable financing to advance its mission to bring clean and affordable energy to communities around the world.

Sunny Spain is one of Europe’s most vibrant solar energy markets. Driven by a government target to generate 74% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030, solar generation jumped by one third in 2022, according to the national grid operator1.

Solarpack has been at the leading edge of that development since it was founded in Bilbao in 2005.

A developer and operator of utility-scale photovoltaic solar energy projects, Solarpack’s portfolio stretches as far as Chile, Peru, Uruguay, India and Malaysia2, with plans to expand in the United States and elsewhere in Europe and Latin America.

As it strives to accelerate solar adoption, Solarpack is also determined to have a positive social impact on the local communities where it operates, in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. The company has designed a Social Action plan that supports their overall mission of universal access to energy, the development of clean energy to vital community centers, including training of installations, and new employment opportunities linked to lifecycle of plants and the provision of clean energy.

Delivering on those social objectives while expanding aggressively requires considerable funding. With that in mind, Solarpack established a green financing framework in 2022 and set a target of raising €1 billion in sustainable financing by the end of 2023.

In March 2023, the company closed a €310 million ESG-linked syndicated credit facility, with HSBC providing €60 million of the total and designated ESG coordinator on the deal.

It is the company’s first sustainable corporate financing facility, providing Solarpack with flexible funding for the development of new solar photovoltaic plants worldwide, with a focus in Europe, LatAm and North America. Solarpack’s portfolio of planned and operational solar farms totals 11 gigawatts (GW), with 5GW expected to be in operation by 2026.

The sustainability criteria included in the facility’s structure confirms Solarpack’s firm commitment to the highest standards of sustainability, corporate governance, and environmental improvement.

Luis Alvargonzalez | Chief Financial Officer, Solarpack.

Raising the bar

Solarpack’s environment, social and governance (ESG) policies have earned it recognition from rating agency Sustainalytics, which rates the company the most sustainable out of a field of 693 utilities worldwide3.

“We’re proud to be able to support Solarpack as it expands its global footprint, while remaining steadfast in its commitment to the highest levels of sustainability. They’re helping to set the bar high in terms of the sustainability expectations for solar developments worldwide,” says Juan Amoraga, Director, Corporate and Commercial Banking, Spain at HSBC.

Solarpack has continued to expand its portfolio in 2023. In March, it signed a contract to build and operate the largest solar power plant in Ecuador at a total cost of approximately €141 million. The plant will be built in a landfill area for construction waste, putting otherwise unusable land to a productive use.

That followed the November 2022 acquisition of a 2.8GW portfolio of planned solar projects in Spain and Italy from Solaer Holding.

Having established a template for sustainable financing, Solarpack has shown that it can access the financial resources it needs to deliver on its ambitious growth plans and help accelerate the global energy transition.

Today we finance a number of industries that significantly contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. We have a strategy to help our customers to reduce their emissions and to reduce our own. Find out more: https://www.hsbc.com/who-we-are/our-climate-strategy

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