NextDecade picks Rio Grande LNG project’s financial advisors

NextDecade picks Rio Grande LNG project's financial advisorsRio Grande LNG facility rendering (Image courtesy of NextDecade)

US LNG export player NextDecade named Societe Generale and Macquarie Capital to act as joint financial advisors for the construction of its Rio Grande LNG and Rio Bravo Pipeline projects.

Societe Generale and Macquarie Capital have each played extensive roles advising and participating in debt and equity financing for large-scale infrastructure and liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects, NextDecade said.

To date, Societe Generale has acted as joint lead arranger in the financing and development of all LNG projects that have been commissioned in North America. For two of these LNG projects, Societe Generale acted as sole financial advisor and assisted the sponsors in raising approximately $25 billion in capital.

NextDecade added in its statement that on a global scale Societe Generale has worked on over 45 transactions in the LNG sector.

Macquarie Capital brings extensive experience in the LNG sector, including raising over $3 billion of equity and mezzanine financing on Freeport LNG (Trains 1 – 3).

NextDecade CFO Ben Atkins said, “Societe Generale and Macquarie Capital’s combined experience and collaborative approach will help ensure that NextDecade optimizes its cost of capital and minimizes its execution risk.”

NextDecade submitted its pre-filing application for Rio Grande LNG with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in March 2015 and its formal application was submitted in May 2016.

The Rio Grande LNG project is being permitted for up to 6 liquefaction trains each with a nominal output capacity of 4.5 million tons per annum (MTPA). In August 2016, NextDecade was granted authorization to export up to 27 MTPA of LNG for a 30-year term by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Last month, NextDecade entered into a definitive merger agreement with Harmony Merger Corporation. The proposed merger, which was first announced on March 13, 2017, is expected to close late in the second quarter of 2017.

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