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Natixis CIB to finance electric buses in Colombia
Senior debt covers three VGMobility concessions within TransMilenio transit system
Michael Marray 9 Nov 2022

Natixis Corporate and Investment Banking has approved a US$95.5 billion facility to finance three concessions fully owned by VGMobility for the supply of clean transportation and clean charging solutions within the TransMilenio transit system in Bogota, Colombia.

Natixis CIB acted as the sole structuring bank, sole underwriter, sole hedging bank and administrative agent for the financing. The senior debt was structured as a mini perm facility divided into three tranches, cross-collateralized and combined with a cross-currency hedge designed to isolate the lenders from foreign exchange volatility risk and align the currency under the liabilities with the revenue stream.

The concessions called for the delivery of 406 electric buses to replace TransMilenio's ageing zonal fleet, of which more than 25% was more than 18 years old, as well as the installation of a state-of-the-art electrical bus charging patio.

Jean-Francois Joachim, VGMobility's chief financial officer,  says the financing “enables incumbent operators to accelerate their mandatory fleet renewals with e-buses, institutional investors and commercial lenders to consolidate their understanding of the asset class, and Bogota to consolidate its position as a leader in sustainable transportation”.

Owned and developed by Vitol Investment Partnership II Limited, VGMobility aims to invest in the green transportation sector across Latin America, focusing on the deployment of electrical fleets and infrastructure solutions in various metropolises.

The transaction marks Natixis CIB's third financing of TransMilenio-backed concessions in just over 12 months, following two separate private placements for Grupo Express and Grupo Masivo in 2021.

TransMilenio services more than four million passengers per day. With close to 1,500 e-buses in circulation, the transport system has made Bogota the city with the largest electric bus network in the world outside China.

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