9 Jun 2020

First Finnish PPP financing for public schools closes with support from NIB and EIB

NIB and the special purpose vehicle Kumppanuuskoulut Oy have signed a 21.5-year loan of up to EUR 75 million to finance new schools and day-care facilities in the city of Espoo. The project is the first public-private-partnership (PPP) to be implemented by a Finnish municipality in support of public education infrastructure.

The loan from NIB will finance the construction of five new elementary schools and three day-care facilities, serving 4,000 pupils. The European Investment Bank has contributed with a 21.5-year EUR 60 million loan to the investment. A loan of up to EUR 35 million from OP Corporate Bank with the same tenor will further support the project.

The new facilities are set to open their doors in the period between 2022 and 2024. Kumppanuuskoulut is responsible for the project’s financing, planning, construction and maintenance until the year 2042.

“The project has measurable sustainability targets and is the first PPP project by a Finnish municipality for building construction”, says Henrik Normann, NIB President & CEO. “Investments in early childhood education will allow Espoo to keep class sizes small and to provide advanced learning environments. This is expected to have positive and widely distributed effects on academic and labour market outcomes.”

“This project can really be a game changer for Finland. It’s an excellent example of how the public sector can use financing under the “Investment Plan for Europe” to get private investors on board for the public good”, EIB Vice-President Thomas Östros states. “Finland is already topping the charts when it comes to successful education, and it’s encouraging to see that they keep investing to provide children with the best possible facilities to learn and study in.”

Paolo Gentiloni, European Commissioner for the Economy, says: “Thanks to a combination of EU support and private investment, the city of Espoo will soon have new schools and day-care centres that will be enjoyed by some 4,000 children and young people. I am pleased that the Investment Plan for Europe is helping to support education projects, and I congratulate Espoo for signing the first municipal public-private-partnership in Finland.”

“The Espoo PPP project is an important milestone for the Finnish market, and an excellent example of seamless co-operation between the municipality, investor consortium and financial institutions,” states Katja Keitaanniemi, CEO of OP Corporate Bank plc, who acted as the sole Commercial Lender and the Global Agent in the transaction.

The number of primary school students in Espoo is expected to increase by 7% during 2019–2023. The project will deliver on the city’s commitment to school network optimisation and modernisation. The facilities will be designed in accordance with the Finnish green building standard RTS and aim for four-star certification under the standard. A significant part of the energy demand will be generated on site with ground heat pumps.

“We are extremely happy to contribute from our part to the City of Espoo’s ”Schools in shape” programme, delivering facilities that are guaranteed to be safe, healthy and functional for children”, says Jaakko Kouvalainen, CEO of Kumppanuuskoulut Oy.

The Finnish school strategy is pursuing four high-level goals; promoting equity and inclusion; promoting quality learning outcomes; promoting lifelong learning; and to plan for an education that is relevant to personal, social, cultural and economic needs.

For a joint press release, please click here. (PDF)

NIB is an international financial institution owned by eight member countries: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden. The Bank finances private and public projects in and outside the member countries. NIB has the highest possible credit rating, AAA/Aaa, with the leading rating agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s.

For further information, please contact:

Nordic Investment Bank:

Mr Olli Lempiäinen, Senior Manager, Origination, at +358 10 618 0525, olli.lempiainen@nib.int

Mr Karim El-Nagdy, Director, Head of Project & Structured Finance, at +358 10 618 0568, karim.el-nagdy@nib.int

Ms Lisa-Maria Altenberger, Communications Officer, at +358 10 618 0234, lisa-maria.altenberger@nib.int

Further press contacts:

EIB: Tim Smit, at +352 691 286423, t.smit@eib.org

OP: OP Corporate Communications, +358 50 523 9904, viestinta@op.fi

Kumppanuuskoulut Oy: Jaakko Kouvalainen, +358 40 54 68 073, jaakko.kouvalainen@kumppanuuskoulut.fi