North South Power Company Limited (NSP) was established in 2012 to own and operate a diverse and growing portfolio of electricity generation businesses across Africa. In 2013, the company acquired a 30-year concession of the Shiroro Hydroelectric Power Plant from the Nigeria Bureau of Public Enterprises. NSP has a working staff of about 330 employees principally situated at the plant. The company generates on the average 8% of Nigeria’s grid power which provides electricity to up to 10 Million Nigerians, with an ambition to improve its generating capacity to over 1500MW in the next five years.
The Shiroro Hydroelectric Power Plant (SHPP), located in Niger State, is the second largest Hydro Power Plant in Nigeria. The power plant was commissioned on the 20th June 1990 with an installed capacity of 600MW from 4 generating units rated at 150MW each. The Plant is powered by a 7,000,000,000m³ water reservoir with an average annual generation of 2,230GWh since 1990. Shiroro Hydro is an extremely essential and resilient asset with a 30-year consistent production history.
The plant is regarded as a strategic asset to the power sector and the national grid as it provides ancillary services to the national grid including grid stabilization and black-start services required to restart the grid in the event of a grid collapse. In instances of national grid collapse, the plant can provide power on dedicated lines to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, powering the capital in island mode.
Since the commencement of its concession period in 2013, NSP has generated uninterrupted power and rehabilitated the 4 x 150MW Plant to its full capacity of 600MW. In 2016, the Plant achieved a record high power generation of 2,688GWh, representing 21 percent above historical average of 2,230GWh since the plant was commissioned in 1990. This was achieved following an overhaul of the Unit 1 turbine and repairs of Unit 4, which were shut down as at the time of acquisition and handover.
With InfraCredit’s guarantee, NSP was able to access the domestic debt capital markets for the first time and raise 15 year financing in local currency using a green bond by issuing a NGN8.5billion 15-Year 15.60% Series 1 Guaranteed Fixed Rate Senior Green Infrastructure Bonds Due 2034 (the “Series 1 Green Bonds”) under a NGN50billion Debt Issuance Programme. The N8.5 Billion Series 1 Guaranteed Green Bonds was accorded a ‘AAA’ credit rating by Agusto & Co. and Global Credit Ratings Co. and issued as the first certified corporate green bond and the longest tenored (15-year) corporate bond issued in the Nigerian debt capital markets.
The Series 1 Green Bonds was 160% subscribed with firm commitments from fifteen (15) institutional investors including eleven (11) pension funds and priced at 70 basis point spread to the comparable 15-year sovereign benchmark bond (FGN 2034) using the closing yield on the reference date adopted for the book building. North South Power issued the first corporate green bond with the longest tenor in sub-saharan Africa. The proceeds will finance an overhaul of the generating unit as well as expand NSP Limited’s generating capacity by 30MW and refinance short term bank debts.