The corporation said Tuesday the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has substantially completed the negotiated term sheet process of its application for the loan with DOE’s Loan Guarantee Program Office.
The term sheet includes the specific terms and conditions USEC must meet to close on a loan guarantee.
It was late October when, following an initial technical review of USEC’s updated application, DOE provided USEC with the draft term sheet that has served as the framework for discussions with DOE.
Now, assuming approval by DOE’s Credit Review Board, the secretary of energy would be in a position to issue a conditional commitment for the loan guarantee.
Once the conditional commitment is reached, USEC would then work with DOE to conclude final documentation and satisfy all technical and financial conditions to funding in order to close on financing and begin drawing funds from the loan.
USEC President and CEO John Welch said Tuesday more reviews remain before a conditional commitment can be offered, but he believes the corporation now has a path that makes it possible to have it by the end of the second quarter.
“We’ve made it clear to DOE that prompt action is necessary to keep the project on a path for deployment,” Welch said in a prepared statement.
The second phase of an investment involving an additional $50 million by Toshiba Corporation and The Babcock & Wilcox Investment Company is conditioned upon receipt by USEC of a conditional commitment by June 30.
If USEC doesn’t close on that second phase of investment by then, each party has a right to terminate its obligations under what’s called a securities purchase agreement.
USEC announced in May that Toshiba Corporation and Babcock & Wilcox Investment Company, an affiliate of the Babcock & Wilcox Company, had signed a definitive agreement to make a $200 million investment in USEC.
Toshiba and B&W will each invest an aggregate of $100 million over three phases, each of which is subject to specific closing conditions. The companies closed on the first phase of the transaction in September, and Toshiba and B&W made a combined $75 million investment in USEC.
USEC will use the funds for general corporate purposes and for continued investment in the American Centrifuge Plant.
USEC has been building the American Centrifuge Plant in Piketon since May 2007. It applied to the DOE Loan Guarantee Program for $2 billion in U.S. government guaranteed debt financing for the ACP in July 2008.
From the time of receiving the anticipated $2 billion federal loan guarantee and additional financing it has applied for, the company says it will take about 24 months to begin initial commercial operations, with the plant reaching top capacity in September 2017.