Access Bank Deploys Sunref For LBS’ Energy Project  


Nigeria’s largest banking institution, Access Bank Plc and Lagos Business School have agreed to fund Lagos Business School’s (“LBS”) 350KW and 152KWh hybrid power solutions project with 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.

According to InsideBusiness, the deployment of the facility by Access Bank is in with its commitment to environmental preservation through its sustainability mission and in continued demonstration of 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, Roosevelt Ogbonna, Managing Director of Access Bank while signing 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”.

Gavin Greenway, Group Head of Project & Structured Finance, congratulated LBS as the first beneficiaries and said, “A citadel of learning like LBS should be 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 premises. Students will see the solar canopy whenever they lookup. This will send a powerful message to the next generation about 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 emissions. We see SUNREF as just the opening phase of a larger, pan-African masterplan from Access Bank”.

Chukwudumije Igwe, Team Lead of the Project and Structured Finance, SSA at Access Bank 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 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 concluded 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.

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