NRG spinoff buys into giant California solar farm

A spinoff of NRG Energy is buying a 25 percent interest in the massive new Desert Sunlight Solar Farm in southern California for $285 million.

NRG, which is based out of Houston and New Jersey, formed NRG Yield in 2013 to own a mix of renewable and conventional power generation assets.

NRG Yield is buying the solar farm interest from GE Financial Services. The deal also includes the assumption of $287.4 million in project debt. The Desert Sunlight Solar Farm, which opened in February, takes up six miles of land about 50 miles from the California-Arizona border.

“The acquisition of an interest in the largest operating solar farm in North America highlights not only our continued commitment to carbon-free generation, but also the strength of our acquisition capabilities to compete for contracted assets of world-class quality in a historically competitive marketplace,” NRG Chairman and CEO David Crane said in a prepared statement.

The deal, which is expected to close by the end of June, puts NRG in a partnership with Florida-based NextEra Energy and Japan’s Sumitomo Corp., who are the 50 percent and 25 percent owners of Desert Sunlight, respectively.