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For decades now we have financed supplies and deliveries of German and European plant manufacturers as well as projects to assure the supply of raw materials in Germany and abroad.

Ultra-modern silicon plant in Iceland

One of the world's most advanced and most sustainable production facilities for silicon metal is being created in the town of Húsavik in northern Iceland. KfW IPEX-Bank is supporting the mid-sized investor PCC SE from Duisburg with project finance amounting to USD 194 million. This is the largest single investment project so far in the history of PCC. The Düsseldorf-based SMS Group, one of the world's leading companies in metallurgy and rolling-mill technology, is constructing the turnkey plant.


Financing case PCC BakkiSilicon hf: Ultra-modern, optimal plant design

The main material required to produce silicon, quartzite, is primarily obtained by the new smelting plant from PCC's own quarry in Poland based on long-term off-take agreements. The quartzite is reduced to silicon metal in two electric arc furnaces at over 2,000 degrees Celsius. Dust emissions are filtered out almost entirely by virtue of the modern plant design. Its terraced layout and specially chosen colour scheme mean the entire facility will blend in very harmoniously to the surrounding Húsavik landscape.

Key employer in the region

Some 120 new jobs will be created in the silicon plant alone. The employment gain to the structurally weak region will be much higher during the construction phase: the port of Húsavik is to be expanded, transport links and grid connections will be established for the new industrial park, and electricity supply capacity increased. Local and international partners and investors have worked together closely on implementing this industrial project. It enjoys strong backing from the local authority and the population.

Securing the supply of raw materials for Germany

The plant should be completed in early 2018. Almost the entire production output will be delivered to German companies based on long-term agreements. As an alloy metal, silicon is mainly used in the aluminium industry. However, it is also needed for many different purposes in the chemical industry and as a key material in photovoltaic modules. Since the project has a special significance for Germany, it is covered by an export credit guarantee from the German federal government for the plant exporter, SMS Group, and a guarantee for untied loans (Ungebundene Finanzkredite - UFK). The German federal government uses this type of cover to support raw material projects abroad which help secure long-term supplies for German industry.

PCC BakkiSilicon financing at a glance:

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Project profile
  • First large-scale commercial project finance of KfW IPEX-Bank in Iceland
  • Total project volume: almost USD 300 million
  • PCC SE has project responsibility
  • Experienced EPC contractor
  • Plant capacity: 32,000 tonnes p.a.
  • New jobs: roughly 120 in the plant;
    more than 100 in the surrounding service industries
  • Energy needs covered by 100% renewable energy (hydropower, geothermal energy)
Contribution of KfW IPEX Bank
  • Tailored project finance structure
  • KfW IPEX-Bank's contribution to the financing:
    USD 194 million
    - Hermes-covered loan: USD 97.4 million
    - Untied loan: USD 70 million
    - Commercial loan: USD 27.4 million
  • 15-year term (including construction)
  • Structuring bank and sole senior lender
  • IPEX sector expertise for efficient support of all project parties
  • All agent functions covered