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Modern Project Finance: A Casebook


An insider's look at how companies structure, value, and finance large capital investments.

From the Chad-Cameroon Pipeline to Poland's A2 Motorway, Modern Project Finance: A Casebook provides a behind-the-scenes look at this dynamic and increasingly important field. Author Benjamin Esty (of Harvard Business School) presents detailed description and analysis of some of the most notable projects in the past five years. By studying these projects, you will gain important insights into the practice of project finance.

Critically acclaimed in the classroom and in the field! “I wish this book (and Ben Esty's course) had been available when I first started working in project finance. It contains many things it took me years to learn as a project finance practitioner. Project finance has become a big business and is an important method of financing economic development throughout the world, but there has been very little in the way of academic theory and research on project finance. Until now, that is, with Ben Esty's course. He has broken new ground in the rigor of his analysis, in gathering empirical data, in exploring why companie s use project finance and why bankers engage in it, and in analyzing project capital structures, how project loans should be priced, and why some projects fail.” –Chris Beale, Managing Director and Global Head of Project & Structured Trade Finance, Citigroup.

“Professor Esty is the preeminent scholar in the study of large projects, and this book is an outstanding introduction to the field of project finance. It provides a framework of theoretical coherence and practical insight that reflects the reality of experience. This exciting and important book is a major contribution to the understanding and teaching of project finance.” –Jay Worenklein, Chairman and CEO of U.S. Power Generating Company, and former Head of Project Finance at Milbank Tweed and Société Général.

“Through these case studies and his careful documentation of institutional details in both developed and developing country settings, Esty has provided an extremely valuable service to the finance profession. He opens up this important field and correctly argues that understanding the many and complex reasons why project finance is so widely used informs the general theory of corporate finance, governance, and organizational theory in important ways. His analysis and arguments that there is no simple, single explanation for the success of project finance, and that project finance can dramatically reduce a wide variety of agency costs seem right on the money.” –Michael C. Jensen , Jesse Isidor Straus Professor (Emeritus), Harvard Business School, and Managing Director of the Organizational Strategy Practice, Monitor Co.

“For people interested in project finance or how finance works in emerging markets, I highly recommend this book. These case studies provide lessons not available in traditional finance textbooks, and they do it in very interesting (and real) situations. Having taught these cases, I believe they provide students and finance practitioners with frameworks to analyze the structure of and rationale for various financing decisions made in developing countries.”–Campbell Harvey, J. Paul Sticht Professor of International Business, Fuqua School of Business, Duke University.

Benjamin Esty is a Professor of Business Administration in the Finance Group at Harvard Business School. He received his PhD. in Business Economics from Harvard University; his MBA from Harvard Business School; and a B.A. degree in Economics from Stanford University.

As a researcher, professor Esty has published numerous articles in both academic and practitioner-oriented journals such as the Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, and the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis. In addition, he has written more than 70 case studies, technical notes, and teaching notes on project finance, emerging market investments, and valuation mechanics. He currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Structured and Project Finance and regularly advises investment banks, development institutions, government agencies, and project sponsors on a broad range of investment, financing, and valuation issues.


About the Author.

1. Introduction to Modern Project Finance.

2. An Overview of Project Finance.

3. Why Study Large Projects?


4. The Chad-Cameroon Petroleum Development and Pipeline Project (A).

5. Australia-Japan Cable: Structuring the Project Company.

6. Calpine Corporation: The Evolution from Project to Corporate Finance.

7. BP Amoco (A): Policy Statement on the Use of Project Finance.

8. BP Amoco (B): Financing Development of the Caspian Oil Fields.


9. Airbus A3XX: Developing the World's Largest Commercial Jet (A).

10. Nghe An Tate & Lyle Sugar Company (Vietnam).

11. An Economic Framework for Assessing Development Impact.

12. Texas High-Speed Rail Corporation.

13. Contractual Innovation in the UK Energy Markets: Enron Europe, The Eastern Group, and the Sutton Bridge Project .

14. Bidding for Antamina


15. Petrolera Zuata, Petrozuata C.A.

16. Poland's A2 Motorway.

17. Restructuring Bulong's Project Debt.

18. Mobile Energy Services Company.

19. Financing the Mozal Project.


20. Chase's Strategy for Syndicating the Hong Kong Disneyland Loan (A).

21. The International Investor: Islamic Finance and the Equate Project .

22. Introduction to Islamic Finance (note).

23. Financing PPL Corporation's Growth Strategy.

24. Basel II: Assessing the Default and Loss Characteristics of Project Finance Loans.

25. Iridium LLC.


Project Finance Research, Data, and Information Sources.

Project Finance Glossary.