Dear Clients and Friends of Fieldstone,
I wanted to send you one last note before the year 2018 passed into memory. I have managed to advise you of our activities three times this year which is very close to my initial intent to write quarterly. A truly quarterly newsletter gives me something to shoot for in 2019.
A key development in the last month is that Fieldstone has been brought together under unified management and ownership on a global basis. We had been working on this consolidation project for some time. As some of you may know, the Fieldstone operations in New York and Malaysia had been operating independently under licence in recent years. We now have taken full control of Fieldstone. This has resulted in the small New York team and its Malaysian subsidiary, being required to change the name and license of their operations, with immediate effect.
With this transition, Fieldstone will be able to better provide a truly seamless global offering, which we have been doing for nearly 28 years. As part of this process, we have launched a permanent Washington DC office and subsidiary (Fieldstone Development Corporation or Fieldstone DC) to serve both North American clients and to assist multi-lateral and US development finance institutions located in that city. The office is led by Ambassador Chris Dell and Barney Rush, a long-time banker and senior figure in the energy market.
Asian clients are and always have been a key part of our practice, for both transactions and projects in developing markets and in Europe. In January next year, Kan Xi, who previously worked with Infraco and Climate Change Capital in London, will relocate to Asia to represent Fieldstone on the ground and assess the needs of our existing and prospective clients. We look forward to following Kan XI’s advice in building out our physical presence in Asia in 2019 and beyond.
We are wistful to see the two long time New York colleagues depart (and wish them well) but we are also plainly enthused to be able to accelerate the integrated international model for the business which our clients expect.
Someone (ok, it was me) compared participation in the current energy space as akin to playing tennis during an earthquake. One really must be deft to advise and bank in an area where so many elements are changing at a rapid pace. The new impulses of the market mean that one must do more than repeat the models of what has been done in years past.
To give examples of these new approaches in operation:
- Energy technology has emerged as a theme important to our clients and our business. In 2017, we closed the E3/DC transaction related to domestic battery storage in Europe, successfully completing a global offering. This year we have been engaged in the energy application of the internet of things (IOT). Without frontrunning our own business, I can also hint that we are looking currently at the way energy technology is applied in developing markets and the investment proposition around such application.
- A short form of expressing Fieldstone’s focus is engagement in new forms of energy and acting to build out new markets, especially for new participants. This explanation would track the major push toward renewables which has grown to be a majority of our project mandates in generation. In addition to project work, we are currently evaluating the ways, together with our partners, 4Initia, in which we can tap value in renewables in an entire system by applying enhanced risk management tools.
- FAIR (Fieldstone Africa Investment Resources) is a new offering in the market, where static roles between finance and development participants have contributed to the impasse for projects that require assistance in a broader sense. FAIR has been able to push to close smaller generation projects that have been blocked or need impetus beyond the Fieldstone offering of structuring and attracting capital for projects. The promising results have spawned a sibling in Latin America, Fieldstone Latin America Investment Resources, or FLAIR, which is part of Fieldstone’s growing footprint in that region.
- Fieldstone is also proud to be working with Africa Green Co which is developing a new platform for cross border power trading for Southern Africa. Africa GreenCo was exceedingly well received in the recently concluded Africa Investment Forum sponsored by the African Development Bank in Johannesburg. We look forward to assisting Africa Green Co in implementing its far-reaching plans, which may change the dynamics of power supply on the continent.
- Finally, Fieldstone has dedicated itself over the last two years to building an infrastructure team around Managing Director Ziyaad Sarang, who is one of the most experienced Private Public Partnership (PPP) bankers in Africa. The infrastructure team gives Fieldstone reach into one of the most important development stories in Africa – the need for roads, bridges and ports is as fundamental as the need for access to power. The team is currently mandated on several of the most important infrastructure projects in Africa with consortia featuring leading companies from around the world.
I hope this gives a taste of the ways in which Fieldstone is extending its services to meet the market challenge. We will continue to listen to your feedback and adjust what we do to anticipate and address your needs, and that of the broader market. Please do not hesitate in forwarding questions or comments to me regarding this newsletter or any ideas or suggestions that you may have for Fieldstone.
In the meantime, I wish you all a very successful year end and holiday period from the entire Fieldstone family (in Nairobi, Casablanca, Dakar, Berlin, London, Johannesburg, Washington DC, Miami, Lima, and Buenos Aires…).
Best Regards and Happy Holidays
Chief Executive Officer