Emirates Central Cooling Systems Corporation, Empower, the world’s largest district cooling services provider, has announced that it has secured a syndicated loan of AED1.5 billion through a group of local, regional and international banks to finance its new projects.
The agreement was signed by Ahmad bin Shafar, CEO of Empower, and Elissar Antonios, CEO of Citibank; Ahmed Al Qassim, Executive Vice President and General Manager Corporate Banking of Emirates NBD; Rola Abu Manneh, CEO of UAE Standard Chartered; Ahmed Abdelaal, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate and Investment Banking Group of Mashreq; and Manbir Dhillon, GM and Country Head of Samba Financial Group Dubai.
The loan will be used to expand the capacity and district cooling infrastructure in various projects, including Jumeirah Village South, International Media Production Zone, Business Bay, Barsha Heights, Deira Waterfront Development and others. The repayments are scheduled to be made in half-yearly instalments.
Bin Shafar stated that banks have a significant appetite for businesses with robust performance, and as a result, Empower’s loan was oversubscribed by more than 3.5 times, which clearly indicated the confidence that banks had in Empower.
He stressed that bank financing for district cooling projects contributed to enhancing energy efficiency, thus reducing CO2 emissions. District cooling saves 50 percent of the energy compared to conventional air conditioning systems. This makes banks an active partner in sustainable development and achieving the objectives of sustainable financing.