Thursday, September 30, 2010

Wilmington Trust to Provide Collateral Agent Services for Colorado’s Largest Solar Power Project

WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wilmington Trust announced today that it is serving as collateral agent for the construction of a 19-megawatt solar photovoltaic power project in Alamosa County, Colorado. The project, known as the Greater Sandhill Solar Project, will provide power to Xcel Energy and is being constructed by SunPower Corp. When completed, the project will be the largest solar power plant in Colorado.   

As collateral agent, Wilmington Trust is responsible for the receipt, transfer, distribution, and investment of funds, as well as protecting the rights of the financing parties, MetLife and John Hancock Financial Services. Wilmington Trust is not a lender to, and has no credit exposure to, the project. It provides collateral agent services, for which it is paid a fee, through its Corporate Client Services (CCS) business.

“For decades, Wilmington Trust has been a premier provider of trustee and administrative services to corporate clients,” said Jack Beeson, senior vice president and head of Corporate Capital Markets Services for CCS. “The Greater Sandhill Solar Project marks the seventh financing transaction in the solar power industry that CCS’ project finance team has provided in 2010. We are pleased to be among the providers whose specialized services are needed to support this project.”

The Greater Sandhill Solar Project is an example of what some observers believe is an effort to reduce the United States’ dependency on oil and provide cleaner energy. The use of solar electric systems to provide energy to homes and businesses has increased in recent years. This is due, in part, to state, local, federal, and utility company incentives and decreasing installation costs. Federal grants created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 helped fund 182 solar projects nationwide, representing more than 46 megawatts of solar capacity as of February 2010, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association, a national trade association. A megawatt of solar electric capacity can power up to 270 average homes, according to Energy Acuity, a clean-tech research firm.

Wilmington Trust’s CCS business provides diversified trustee and administrative services for capital markets transactions, special purpose entities, and retirement plans, as well as institutional investment management services. Because Wilmington Trust does not underwrite securities offerings or lend to large corporate clients, it is able to deliver corporate trust services that are conflict-free.

Wilmington Trust Corporation (NYSE: WL) is a financial services holding company that provides Regional Banking services throughout the mid-Atlantic region, Wealth Advisory services for high-net-worth clients in 36 countries, and Corporate Client services for institutional clients in 89 countries. Its wholly owned bank subsidiary, Wilmington Trust Company, which was founded in 1903, is one of the largest personal trust providers in the United States and the leading retail and commercial bank in Delaware. Wilmington Trust Corporation and its affiliates have offices in Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Vermont, the Cayman Islands, the Channel Islands, London, Dublin, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, and Amsterdam.

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