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Renewable Energy Economics and Finance

  • Overview

    By 2050 global electricity demand will more than double requiring some 12'000 GW of new power generation capacity out of which three quarters will be renewables. In the last decade, an overall investment of some US$ 1.5 trillion were flowing globally into the renewable energy sector by far outpacing investments into the fossil fuel power sector. In most regions of the world electricity produced by solar, wind and hydro projects are already the most cost competitive solution as of today. Adding to this the arrival of batteries, hydrogen and innovative financing is creating the bread for disruptive business models and new market players along the power value chain. Electricity position itself as the “fuel” of the future with the global energy transition in full swing.

    This course will help you to understand the specific economics around the various renewable energy technologies and how to structure financing for a successful business case.

    The seminar will be enriched by using additional materials in form of spreadsheets, articles, online tools or video clips to show real world case studies. Significant time will be dedicated to case studies and group work in order to enhance application of new knowledge and leverage experiences between delegates.

    Participants will also receive access to a shared cloud folder with in-depth background reports, articles, bookmarks, templates and tools in electronic format.

    Course Objectives

    • Understanding and comparing various renewable energy technologies
    • Understand renewable economics and business models
    • Identify, evaluate and allocate key risks in a project finance context
    • Review and use a renewable financial model
    • Assess risk and return issues for both debt providers and equity investors
    • Hands on exercises and group work to apply knowledge and leverage experience
    • Zooming in and out from concepts, to project and industry context
    • Analyse business cases from around the world and understand their economics
    • Blending technical, financial and legal elements in a straight forward way
    • Comprehensive understanding of the battery value stack and revenue streams


    • Project Developers and Sponsors
    • OEM manufacturers, EPC contractors and O&M service providers
    • IPPs, Utilities and Grid operators
    • Private Equity & Institutional Investors
    • Development finance institutions and Commercial lenders
    • Legal, Technical and Insurance Advisors
    • Government officials and Regulators
    • Oil & Gas upstream companies
    • Petrochemical and Process industry companies
    • Corporate procurement and Contract managers
    • Business developers and Sales Managers


  • DAY 1 - Economics of Renewable Technologies


    • Rotor blades as a key item for wind turbines defining power curve and energy production
    • Drive trains and how their reliability impacts cost of energy and service costs
    • Larger rotor diameters, increasing tower heights – is the sky the limit?
    • Are the teething problems of offshore technologies overcome or why offshore at all?
    • wind hours, wind speed, time of measurement, tower height, turbine performance


    • From silicon, ingots, wafer, cells to modules and solar PV power plants – limits of growth?
    • Silicon, thin film, multijunction, organic and concentrated photovoltaics – where is the future?
    • Balance of system including inverters, transformers, cabling and structural components
    • From global irradiation to direct, diffuse and horizontal irradiation
    • Watt-peak, cell efficiency, performance ratio and standard test conditions – Watt means what?
    • One-axis and two axis tracking system – increased energy output or headache?


    • catchment area, mean rain falls, mean flow
    • head availability, hydraulic structures (dike, dam, intake), run-o-river vs dam projects
    • turbine technologies
    • water quality, reserved flow, groundwater flow, sediment transport
    • flood prevention, fish passages, leisure activities


    • Co-firing versus dedicated biomass power plants for combined heat and power
    • From combustion steam cycle to Stirling engine, ORC, BICGT/BIGCC
    • Biogas via anaerobic digestion for small scale and off-grid installations
    • Difference between power generation efficiency and energy efficiency
    • Pelletisation, torrefaction, pyrolisis and gasification – where are they commercially?
    • Is it about technology or feedstock logistics and competition?
    • The bankability challenge of standalone biomass power plants
    • Importance of size and location for biomass power plants
    • Bankable feedstock supply for biomass power plants – quality, quantity, price and on time


    • Flash& Dry steam plants, Binary Kalina cycle(ORC) plants and their applications
    • Challenges in drilling and exploration – high upfront DEVEX or sunk costs?
    • Limits of scalability for geothermal power plants
    • Enhanced geothermal systems – leaving demonstration phase?
    • Challenges for heat usage and bankable revenues
    • drilling depth, # dwells, resulting water pressure & temperatures, initiated water cycle


    • Satellite and terrestrial data available for renewable resource assessment
    • Measurement campaigns in order to acquire bankable annual energy production estimates
    • Uncertainties of power curves or it wasn't like this in the brochure
    • Understanding the resource assessment report - standard deviation, variance and p50/p90
    • Experience of predictability and variability of renewable resources assessments over time
    • Bankability impact of using one-year or ten year data and additional measurement investments
    • How reducing uncertainties of annual energy output drives debt capacity and financial returns
    • Sources of uncertainties and variability – expertise or layman understanding of the variables



    • Variables of capacity factors and availability and their differences
    • CAPEX & OPEX split, variations and trends
    • Understanding Levelized Cost of Electricity and why they are depending on location

    RE finance and structures

    • Why the financial concept should be integral part of the project development process?
    • Key Differences of and rational for Corporate Finance and Project Finance
    • Development of Project Finance within the Infrastructure and Renewable Sector
    • Project financing structures and the complex commercial relationships and legal issues
    • What means a bankable project and how to understand and meet lender’s ratios
    • Project Stakeholders – Developer, Sponsor, Lender, Insurance provider, EPC, Equipment Vendor, O&M, Authorities, Off-taker, Supplier
    • Forming a robust project set-up from Equity and Debt Sources


    • Risk phases: Development, Construction, Start-up and Operations & Maintenance
    • Trigger Points: Concession signing, Financial Close, Commercial Operation Date, End of Loan
    • EPC turn-key contract – on time, on budget, to specifications
    • Delayed & Performance Liquidated Damages and Caps on Liability
    • Force Majeure provisions and Dispute resolution
    • Key issues on O&M service provider and contract in relation to bankability
    • Warranties, insurances, guarantees, hedges – interest rate, currency, political risk
    • Multilateral banks and export credit agencies – essential door openers for emerging markets

    RE project screening checklists

    • Project description and characteristics
    • Land lease
    • Resource Assessment
    • Permits & Concessions
    • Grid connection
    • Project Contracts (EPC, PPA, Sponsors, Lenders, O&M, Insurance, Guarantees)
    • Bankability, Due Diligence and external Advisors (technical, commercial, legal)
    • Financial Analysis and Debt capacity


    •    Capital injections into the project, pro rata basis and timing of drawdowns

    •    Additional lenders security using Grace Period, Debt Service and O&M Reserve Accounts

    •    Cash Sweeps, Cash Traps and Dividend Blockers and how they damage Equity returns

    •    Where the various elements relate to within the Cash Flow Waterfall

    •    Covenants, Securities and the concept of Sources and Uses

    •    Interest Rate, Banking Fees, Margins and Commissions applied to a Project Finance Loan

    •    Conditions Precedents - Important steps towards Financial Close

    •    Direct Agreements

    Financial Analysis & Structuring

    • Using the Cash Flow Waterfall to calculate Cash Flow Available for Debt Service (CFADS)
    • How the Cash Flow Prediction, the DSCR and loan tenor drives overall Debt Capacity
    • Leveraging equity returns by gearing the equity:debt ratio
    • Project and Equity NPV and IRR
    • Limiting factors on loan tenors
    • Difference between minimum and average DSCR over the loan life of the project
    • Calculating Loan Life and Project Life Cover Ratios and comparing them to DSCR
    • Different Repayment structures from linear, annuity and debt sculpting
    • Sensitivity & Scenario Analysis applying to CAPEX, OPEX and Revenue variations


    • Off-take agreements for power, heat and certificates – importance for long-term floor
    • Requisites of a bankable PPA
    • PPA Timing Requirements and payment terms
    • Different Tariff Structures for dispatchable and non-dispatchable technologies
    • Capacity & Energy Charges, Metering and delivery point
    • Cure Periods and Step-In Period – deemed commercial operation date
    • Curtailment provisions within PPAs – deemed capacity and deemed generation clauses
    • Risk of non-payment by the offtaker, FX volatility and currency convertibility risk


    • Case studies for the various technologies will show best practice, failures and the variety of applications for renewable
    • Understanding resource audits and annual energy production estimates for various technologies and sites.
    • Sample PPA, EPC and O&M contracts and clauses from various countries and technologies
    • Sample Loan term sheets for renewable project finance
    • SAM and RETScreen free available software for feasibility analysis of energy projects
    • Excel based financial models to analyse LCOE and financial ratios
  • Our Tailored Learning Offering

    Do you have five or more people interested in attending this course? Do you want to tailor it to meet your company’s exact requirements? If you’d like to do either of these, we can bring this course to your company’s office. You could even save up to 50% on the cost of sending delegates to a public course and dramatically increase your ROI.

    If you want to run this course at a location convenient to you or if you want a completely customised learning solution, we can help.

    We produce learning solutions that are completely unique to your business. We’ll guide you through the whole process, from the initial consultancy to evaluating the success of the full learning experience. Our learning specialists ensure you get the maximum return on your training investment.

  • We have a combined experience of over 60 years providing learning solutions to the world’s major organisations and are privileged to have contributed to their success. We view our clients as partners and focus on understanding the needs of each organisation we work with to tailor learning solutions to specific requirements.

    We are proud of our record of customer satisfaction. Here is why you should choose us to help you achieve your goals and accelerate your career:

    • Quality – our clients consistently rate our performance ‘excellent’ or ‘outstanding’. Our average overall score awarded to us by our clients is nine out of ten.
    • Track record – 10/10 of the world’s largest banks have chosen us as there training provider and we have delivered training across the largest banks and have trained over 25,000 professionals.
    • Knowledge – our 100+ strong team of industry specialist trainers are world leading financial leaders and commentators, ensuring our knowledge base is second to none.
    • Reliability – if we promise it, we deliver it. We have delivered over 25,000 events both in person and online, using simultaneous translation to delegates from over 99 countries.
    • Recognition – we are accredited by the British Accreditation Council and the CPD Certification Service. In an independent review by Feefo we scored 4.2/5 on service and 4.7/5 on Coursecheck
This course can be run as an In-house or Tailored Learning programme



    Your trainer is an independent financial advisor with some 18 years’ experience in the power & renewable sector. He started out his career in a leading North European Strategy Consultancy, where he made substantial contributions to build the energy practice within the firm. He developed and implemented innovative distributions concepts for utility clients to face the competitive challenges of the newly liberalized German electricity market.   In 2002, anticipating the tectonic shifts to arrive in the energy sector by renewables,he decided to set-up his own advisory boutique to serve exclusively the renewable energy sector. In the following years, he, supported world leading Utilities, IPPs and Private Equity Investors, such as Iberdrola, AES, RWE, OMV, Englefield Capital and Hudson Clean Energy Partners to thoroughly assess international market opportunities and successfully assemble project portfolios across mature and emerging European renewable markets. Based on this work his clients were able to realize their investment strategy via the acquisition of local partners, greenfield and operating wind, solar, biomass, geothermal or hydro projects with pipelines of many thousands MW capacity.   He became a recommended speaker at leading international energy conferences on topics of market attractiveness and investment drivers for renewables. He formed part of the Working Group ‘Financing the Energy Turnaround’ in Frankfurt and was one of the first members of the European Technology Platform for Wind Energy, as well as of EWEA, ACORE, LAWEA, EUBIA, ESHA and EGEC.   Since ten years, Christian, focuses on the particular challenges of power projects in emerging markets, such as Bulgaria, Turkey, Egypt, Georgia, New Zealand, Taiwan, South Korea, Mexico, South Africa or Pakistan. He flags risks to international investors coming from regulatory environment, grid connection and competitors. Developers are supported to raise equity, mitigates risks via the creation of international project consortia and achieve project finance bankability with domestic and international lenders.   Since five years, he has successfully delivered energy finance training to hundreds of executives from more than 80 countries in plus 50 seminars in the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, Denmark, The Netherlands, UAE, the US, Chile, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa, Egypt, Georgia, Cote d’Ivoire, Indonesia and Hong Kong.   Delegates come from leading financial institutions, industrial corporations and governments such as e.g. IFC, FMO, GIZ, IFU, Obviam, KfW, HBOR, European Investment Bank, UNDP, Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, African Finance Corporation, JBIC, Industrial Development Corporation, Banco Santander, Enel, E.ON, Vattenfall, Endesa, Eskom, Total, Sumitomo, Gamesa, Siemens, Akka Enerji, Akzo Nobel, BP, Shell, Abengoa, Energomontaza, Mitsubishi, SgurrEnergy, PwC, Investec, RES, The Crown Estate, Coca-Cola, Procter&Gamble, Pacific Gas & Electric, Omrom, OFGEM, Munich Re, AES, Alstom, Schneider Electric, Aveng Group, Air Liquide, NEPRA, Saudi Aramco, King Saud University, Swicorp, Qatar Petroleum, K.A. CARE. Some of the topics delivered include Renewable Technologies & Economics, Independent Power Projects, Project Finance, Financial Analysis & Structuring, Risk Mitigation, Loan Term Sheets Elements, Power Purchase Agreements, EPC and O&M contracts, Resource Assessments, Government Tenders and Policy Incentives, Electricity Market Structures & Liberalization, Electricity Pricing, Project Transactions & Valuations, Innovative Renewable Business Models.    



This course is taught virtually online over 3 days. Course start time is Central European Standard Time, Spain (CET (GMT+01:00)