Eversheds helps Amber Green to helm of green energy fund

Eversheds has advised the Amber Green Consortium on its appointment to manage the £100m London Energy Efficiency Fund (LEEF) on behalf of the Mayor’s London Green Fund (LGF).

Investment funds partner Ronald Paterson and corporate partner Paul Lowe led the team advising the group, with partner Clive Jones advising on the tax issues.

The closed-ended fund was established by the European Investment Bank (EIB) on behalf of the London Development Agency and the London Waste and Recycling Board.

Pinsent Masons partner Andy Normington advised EIB on the deal. Ashurst loan markets partner Lee Doyle was drafted in for the Royal Bank of Scotland, which is investing £50m in the scheme, with the remaining £50m invested by the LGF.

Doyle said it was a ­”complex and strategic transaction” for the bank.

The fund will operate for 10 years, managed and operated by the consortium, which is led by social ­economic infrastructure projects sponsor and manager Amber Infrastructure, consultancy Arup and RBS.

Eversheds has been ­advising the Amber Green Consortium for the past six years in what it sees is a growth area for funds.

According to Paterson, using public money in ­corporate structures comes with challenges.

“In addition to normal funds structures in private equity or real estate deals, you’re using European money and public money, which are more heavily regulated,” he said. “This was a complex deal that required in-depth knowledge of the structuring of funds supported by public bodies in the UK and the EU, and also of green investment funds.”

LEEF is the second Urban Development Fund established for London and aims to reduce the capital’s carbon emissions by 2020 by investing in renewable energy.

Carbon emissions currently stand at four million tonnes per year, or 10 per cent of the capital’s overall carbon footprint.