Q1 2015 League Tables Analysis: US LNG

Export liquefied natural gas (LNG) continued to dominate privately financed US power and energy debt volumes in the first quarter of the year, according to IJGlobal's Q1 2015 league tables. Export LNG accounted for 30% of closed debt in the first quarter of the year, mirroring the overall percentage for the sector since Q3 2012.

Export LNG debt financings in the US first appeared in 2012. Since then, LNG has led, or nearly led, each quarter that included at least one related financial close.

In Q1 2015, Cheniere Energy Partners (CQP) closed a $2 billion project bond for the Sabine Pass liquefaction project in Louisiana, the proceeds of which will help fund construction of the complex’s first four trains. CQP had initially floated a $1 billion bond, but strong investor interest in LNG bonds allowed the sponsor to double the issue’s size.

Banks have been just as eager for export LNG financings, and perhaps more so. Bankers say that LNG financings closed since 2012 have helped their project finance businesses meet budgetary aims.

CQP was the first sponsor to close an export LNG debt financing in the US, for Sabine Pass, in Q3 2012. Starting with that quarter, the US has closed $34 billion of export LNG debt – from banks and bond investors – or 35% of privately financed domestic energy and power debt.

Three projects have contributed to all of the export LNG debt in the US – Sabine Pass, Cameron LNG and Freeport LNG. Sabine Pass has amassed the most debt, and has been the lone issuer of project bonds.

In Q4 2014, export LNG projects made up more than half of overall US energy and power debt – 59%, thanks to Freeport LNG and Cameron LNG.

  Q3 2012 Q4 2012 Q1 2013 Q2 2013 Q3 2013 Q4 2013 Q1 2014 Q2 2014 Q3 2014 Q4 2014 Q1 2015 Total
Proportion of LNG debt (%) 56.59 0 37.75 42.4 0 14.19 0 30.94 0 59.36 29.78 34.68

Export LNG will likely continue its dominance through year-end – but perhaps not beyond. The collapse in global oil and gas prices prompted some sponsors to postpone planned LNG projects. But at least two projects are expected to close financing before year-end: Freeport LNG’s third train ($3.5 billion in debt) and the first two trains at Cheniere Energy’s Corpus Christi project ($7-8 billion in debt).

Asset SnapshotSabine Pass LNG Terminal

Est. Value:
USD 5,900.00m
Full Details

Asset SnapshotFreeport LNG Terminal (Import and Export)

Est. Value:
USD 16,762.02m
Full Details

Asset SnapshotCameron LNG Phase I

Est. Value:
USD 11,000.00m
Full Details

Asset SnapshotCorpus Christi LNG

Est. Value:
USD 14,600.00m
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotSabine Pass LNG Terminal Additional Facility 2012

Financial Close:
02/08/2012
SPV:
Cheniere Energy Partners
Value:
$5,626.00m USD
Equity:
$2,000.00m
Debt:
$3,626.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
64:36
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotFreeport LNG Train 1

Financial Close:
25/11/2014
SPV:
FLNG Liquefaction, LLC (FLIQ)
Value:
$5,606.00m USD
Equity:
$1,240.00m
Debt:
$4,366.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
78:22
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotSabine Pass LNG Terminal Additional Facility H1 2013

Financial Close:
01/02/2013
SPV:
Sabine Pass Liquefaction, LLC
Value:
$1,500.00m USD
Equity:
$0.00m
Debt:
$1,500.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
100:0
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotCameron LNG Phase I

Financial Close:
14/10/2014
SPV:
Cameron LNG, LLC
Value:
$10,943.00m USD
Equity:
$3,178.00m
Debt:
$7,765.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
71:29
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotFreeport LNG Train 1 & 2

Financial Close:
25/11/2014
SPV:
FLNG liquefaction 2 LLC (FLIQ2)
Value:
$5,343.02m USD
Equity:
$1,318.00m
Debt:
$4,025.02m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
75:25
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotSabine Pass LNG Train Additional Facility 2014

Financial Close:
20/05/2014
SPV:
Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC
Value:
$2,500.00m USD
Equity:
$0.00m
Debt:
$2,500.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
100:0
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotCorpus Christi LNG - Trains 1 and 2

Financial Close:
13/05/2015
SPV:
Cheniere Corpus Christi Holdings, LLC
Value:
$12,403.71m USD
Equity:
$4,000.00m
Debt:
$8,403.71m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
68:32
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotSabine Pass LNG Bond Issue 2015

Financial Close:
26/02/2015
SPV:
Sabine Pass Liquefaction, LLC
Value:
$2,000.00m USD
Equity:
$0.00m
Debt:
$2,000.00m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
100:0
Full Details

Transaction SnapshotFreeport LNG Train 3

Financial Close:
28/04/2015
SPV:
FLNG Liquefaction 3, LLC
Value:
$4,616.79m USD
Equity:
$0.00m
Debt:
$4,616.79m
Debt/Equity Ratio:
100:0
Full Details