Blackstone, Arevon Close $350M Financing on Condor Battery Storage Project

Feb. 13, 2024
The 200-MW/800MWh Condor Energy Storage Project could be operational as early as the second quarter of this year and is contracted under a 15-year grid services agreement connected to the Southern California Edison (SCE) utility grid.

A 200-MW/800MWh battery energy storage system (BESS) backed by a wing of private equity giant Blackstone Inc. is now under construction in Grand Terrace, California.

The Condor Energy Storage Project could be operational as early as Q2 2024 and is contracted under a 15-year grid services agreement connected to the Southern California Edison (SCE) utility grid.

Condor is being financed with $350 Million in equity, debt, and transfer funding led by renewable energy developer Arevon Energy Inc. and Blackstone Credit & Insurance. The latter’s parent company, Blackstone Inc., is a key energy transition backer and one of the world’s biggest private investment managers with more than $1 trillion in assets.

The Condor BESS will feature Tesla’s utility-scale Megapack 2 XL battery system. Tesla is also contracted to provide operations and maintenance services for the batteries, while Rosendin Electric is the engineering, procurement, and construction contractor.

Arevon will eventually own and operate Condor on a long-term basis. The massive battery system will deliver grid-firming capacity and reliability services for SCE and help facilitate balance in tandem with renewable energy resources in the region. The utility SCE, like others in California, is investing aggressively in renewables and battery storage as part of the state's net zero emissions goals

“Blackstone continues to see a tremendous need for large-scale financing solutions in the energy transition market, and we look forward to partnering with Arevon on future opportunities,” Zachary Rubenstein, Managing Director in the Blackstone Credit & Insurance Sustainable Resources Group, said in a statement.

Stifel Financial Corp. has committed to buying investment tax credits related to the Condor project. Financing is also supported by a $164 million debt facility secured with lead arrangers CoBank ACB, Helaba, and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., while the Bank of New York Mellon served as collateral and administrative agent.

Blackstone Inc. is deeply engaged in investment for the electric grid and decarbonization technologies. The private equity fund manager recently closed on an acquisition of Power Grid Components, Inc., a manufacturer of applications for electrical substations.

Energy Exemplar, a global provider of energy market simulation software, was acquired by funds affiliated with Blackstone and Vista Equity Partners late last year.

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