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Simon Johnson

Director

Experience

PPP/PFI and infrastructure project finance

Joined the Team

July 2019

Specialism

PFI/PPP, Structured Finance, Project Finance

Simon leads financial and commercial advisory engagements in the infrastructure sector.

Simon brings 20 years’ experience of PPP/PFI and infrastructure project finance to the DWPF team, gained in a wide range of organisations through both the private and public sectors. His experience spans social infrastructure, economic infrastructure and renewables projects, throughout the project lifecycle and includes extensive highways, street lighting, education, waste, student accommodation and ‘blue light’ sector projects experience.

Simon’s most recent engagements include:

  • Leading the financial advisory mandate with a consortium successfully selected as Preferred Partner for a PPP university student accommodation for a London institution.
  • Performing a deep dive review into potential savings for a waste PFI project, covering service changes, refinancing, capital contributions, restructuring, extending or terminating the contract, and
  • Supporting the three partner Councils in the South Tyne and Wear Waste Management Partnership through the negotiation and implementation of the refinancing of their PFI project, providing the Partnership with a significant reduction in the price for future waste tonnage.

Simon joined from Local Partnerships, a public sector company owned by HM Treasury, the Local Government Association and the Welsh Government. While there he developed and led their refinancing service; he managed and closed PFI refinancing projects for Kirklees, Salford, Barnsley, Luton, Oldham, Derbyshire, Bristol and Cumbria councils. Therefore, Simon has a wealth of experience assisting public sector counterparties achieve optimal outcomes from their refinancing processes, and he has also developed expertise in working through the approvals processes required by various central government departments.

He started his career at BAE SYSTEMS, working on some of the earliest PFI and wider PPP model projects in the defence sector. During a secondment to the PPP team at the National Audit Office, he benefitted from exposure to developing thinking in other sectors. He moved to the UK origination team at Dexia, one of the most active lending teams in the industry, leading on modelling, legal documentation and due diligence aspects of senior debt lending mandates. Simon subsequently joined the development and construction company Lend Lease, where he led all commercial, financial and funding aspects of bidding and closing infrastructure projects, with an emphasis on the waste sector. He then moved to Local Partnerships in 2014, where he represented a centre of expertise for commercial and financial best practice to strengthen the understanding of the public sector.