Access Bank Plc and Lagos Business School recently reached an agreement on the funding of Lagos Business School’s, LBS, 350KW and 152KWh hybrid power solutions project, the Project, using the Sustainable Use of Natural Resources and Energy Finance “SUNREF” facility.
SUNREF is a green energy facility availed to Access Bank by the Agence Française de Développement (“AFD” or the “French DFI”) to support Nigeria’s journey towards carbon emissions’ reduction and a cleaner environment. The facility dynamics match the financing organised by the bank, with renewable power expertise from AFD through their Technical Partner, Winrock.
Access Bank is committed to environmental preservation through its sustainability mission and continues to demonstrate this commitment through the expansion of its green risk asset portfolio. The LBS financing which was packaged by the Bank’s Business Banking Division and the Project & Structured Finance team will be the first utilization of the SUNREF facility.
Speaking on this landmark, the MD/CEO of Access Bank, Roosevelt Ogbonna, who was present to formally sign the offer document said, “Our Bank believes in projects with sustainable and impact value, and the LBS project is only the beginning of many such projects the Bank will support using the SUNREF facility”.
The Group Head of Project & Structured Finance, Gavin Greenway, congratulated LBS as the first beneficiaries and said, “It’s fitting that a citadel of learning like LBS are the first confirmed beneficiaries of the SUNREF facility. This means the energy transition gospel becomes even more compelling given the practical reference it has on its own premises. Students will see the solar canopy whenever they look up. This will send a powerful message to the next generation of how we must power our future. Whilst Africa is a negligible CO2 emitter globally, its resolve to go green will signal to the world how seriously it takes responsibility for its own emissions. We see SUNREF as just the opening phase of a larger, pan-African masterplan from Access Bank”.
The Team Lead of the Project and Structured Finance, SSA at Access Bank, Chukwudumije Igwe, explained that “Africa has become serious about its journey towards a Net-Zero future and our Bank is contributing by financing high impact and quality bankable green asset opportunities using our own balance sheet alongside the SUNREF facility. Indeed, we appreciate that bankability as a concept has now expanded beyond risk and return predictions, to impact measurement”.
He stated that “the Bank will, therefore, consider significantly de-risked green opportunities that conform to the environmental, technical and impact specifications for renewable or energy efficiency as well as meet credit specifications principally capacity to repay.
Igwe further stated that Access Bank will continue to support as many SUNREF applications as possible if they meet these two cardinal criteria. The SUNREF facility is available and can be obtained by applying through the SUNREF website. The facility is most suitable for small and medium sized commercial entities and can be utilised for not just renewable power production, but also energy saving / conservation equipment upgrades.