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David Stearns

Senior Advisor, Energy & Nuclear Power

+44 20 7183 9764

david.stearns@portlandadvisers.com




David is an energy specialist with a focus on competitive and regulated power generation, electricity and natural gas transmission, and utility capital structuring. He has 18 years’ experience in project and structured corporate advisory and arranging, having held senior roles in the project finance and investment banking coverage teams at HSBC, Credit Agricole / Calyon and Citigroup. He has advised and arranged on a broad range of transactions for utilities, financial sponsors, governments and independent power producers.

A number of projects in David’s track record stand out for their innovation and path-finding features. These include:

  • Advising and arranging a €865 million multi-sourced finance plan for a 670MW greenfield coal-fired power plant, in pre-EU accession Bulgaria for the AES Corporation;
  • Advising a Unit/Eletrocentrale joint venture on project financing for a 120MW gas-fired brownfield CHP in Romania;
  • Advising a TNK-BP/OGK1 joint venture on raising debt for a 1600 + 800MW greenfield expansion CCGT in the Tyumen region, Russia;
  • Advising Bulgarian Energy Holding, the state-owned utility holding, on restructuring and financing options for Bulgaria’s 2000MW brownfield nuclear power development
  • Advising National Grid in the competitive bidding to acquire and finance £2.1 billion of UK offshore transmission assets (OFTOs);
  • Advising Kahramaa, the government-owned utility, on the Ras Laffan C 2700MW/63MIGD gas-fired IWPP in Qatar;
  • Advising, arranging and sole underwriting of UK onshore windfarms for independent power producers;
  • Advising EDF on restructuring options for a post-construction 240MW CHP CCGT, and IGCC joint venture project, in which EDF was acting as toller and shareholder, in Northern France;
  • Co-arranging the refinancing of TVO’s €2.5 billion OL3 nuclear power project using ECA and non-shareholder-backed finance;

In the nuclear sector, David reactivated and led HSBC’s European Nuclear Working Group, leading client mandates and providing thought leadership for the EU, CEE, ME and Asian nuclear markets. He is a regular speaker at nuclear conferences, and recently participated on government-led industry panels on financing nuclear newbuild in the UK. In 2011, the IAEA appointed him as a non-confidential financing/commercial expert in support of newbuild missions in Asia, the Middle East and Central Europe.

David graduated with a B.A. cum laude from Amherst College (USA) and received a MSc. from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service (USA).