Chadbourne Represents Lenders to the Approximately $6 Billion Sabine Pass LNG Liquefaction Project
Will Be World's First LNG Terminal Able to Import and Regasify LNG and Liquefy and Export Natural Gas
August 1, 2012
Chadbourne & Parke LLP represented the lenders in connection with the approximately $6 billion Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC Project, comprising approximately $3.6 billion of project finance debt and approximately $2 billion of equity. The financing closed on July 31, 2012.
The project is sponsored by Cheniere Energy Partners, which owns (through its Sabine Pass LNG subsidiary) the Sabine Pass LNG Terminal located in Cameron Parish, La., with liquefied natural gas regasification and send-out capacity of approximately 4.3 Bcf/d, storage capacity of approximately 16.9 Bcfe and two marine berths.
The project, directly owned by the borrowing entity, Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC, will comprise the addition of liquefaction services at the Sabine Pass LNG Terminal by constructing two liquefaction trains with a nominal production capacity of at least 182,500,000 MMBtu per annum and related equipment and facilities. The project will convert the Sabine Pass LNG Terminal into a facility capable of liquefying and exporting domestic U.S. natural gas in addition to importing and regasifying foreign-sourced LNG. This world-class project will be the first LNG terminal in the world capable of both importing and regasifying LNG and liquefying and exporting natural gas.
The approximately $3.6 billion of debt financing was arranged by eleven joint lead arrangers; ten additional financial institutions completed the lending syndicate. The necessary equity funds will be provided by the Sponsor following an equity investment in the Sponsor by investment funds affiliated with and managed by the Blackstone Group and an additional equity investment in the Sponsor by Cheniere Energy, Inc.
Partners Noam Ayali and Ben Koenigsberg led the Chadbourne team working on the project, which also included partners Marjorie Glover, Bill Greason, Charles Hord, Richard Leder, Chaim Wachsberger, and Ted Zink; counsels Scott Bank, Donna Bobbish, Sue Cowell and Christy Rivera; associates Rebecca Abou-Chedid, Kirsten Carlson, Brian Greene, Kevin Prokup, Monika Szymanski and Rodion Yemelyanenko; as well as legal assistant Laura Ferrazzano and summer associates Robert Gambo and Jason Keating.
"Chadbourne worked on several of the LNG receiving terminals in the U.S. in the early and mid-2000s. We are delighted to have now had the opportunity to advise the lenders on this groundbreaking transaction to finance the world's first LNG terminal capable of both importing and regasifying LNG and liquefying and exporting natural gas," said Mr. Ayali. "This marquee project brought together the Firm's tremendous project finance and oil, gas and LNG expertise, and required contributions from numerous practice groups throughout the Firm," added Mr. Koenigsberg.