Energy projects and infrastructure have always played a key role in economic success. However due to the number of strains put onto economies around the world due to COVID-19 and the ever-increasing pressures of global warming, the importance of energy and infrastructure projects have never been so crucial.
In this article I am going to discuss 4 main notable firms who are leading the way forward and helping to shape the future of the Energy Transition Market.
The Rise of Infrastructure Investment
Infrastructure is a broad term, covering a wide range of sub-sectors from renewables to fibre and schools. What is apparent is that this sector forms an important part of our society and consequently investments in this space are not only profitable, but a necessity. Covid19 has been a pandemic which has shaken the world and impacted the ways in which investors invest, however alongside this, we are dealing with another crisis, climate change. This has been a great driver for infrastructure investing as environmental, social, and governance investments are becoming more attractive. Infrastructure, particularly clean energy, water, and wastewater assets have become increasingly attractive to a growing pool of investors seeking sustainable or socially responsible investments.
Climate Change and Infrastructure Investment
On a global level there are ambitious targets to become more carbon efficient, the goal is to reduce the level of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere, decreasing greenhouse gases, and ultimately trying to eliminate climate change. As a result, there is a presently a huge focus on energy transition within the Investment space. The energy transition is a pathway towards transformation of the global energy sector from fossil-based to zero-carbon. Decarbonisation of the energy sector requires urgent action on a global scale, and while a global energy transition is underway, further action is needed to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate the effects of climate change.
In its stimulus plan in September 2020, the French government presented its hydrogen roadmap and its vision to make this gas “France’s energy of the future”. A plan amounting to €7.2 billion between now and 2030 (including 2 billion between 2020 and 2022) The Spanish government have also recently shared their “Hydrogen Roadmap: a commitment to renewable hydrogen”, with a core objective of achieving climate neutrality, with a 100% renewable electricity system by 2050. To reach the ambitious objectives of the Spanish Hydrogen Roadmap, an estimated investment of over USD 10 billion will be required during the period 2020-2030. Investors have a large role to play in supporting these governments to reach their ambitious targets, hence why we are seeing more Investments into the energy transition space across Europe.
Climate Tech Emerging Technology Landscape
Images Courtesy of Pitchbook.
Notable Firms in the Energy Transition Market
Below are some notable firms across Spain and France who have recently closed funds/ invested into the energy transition space.
White Summit Capital (Spain)– Asset manager and Investor dedicated to energy transition
- This year they announced the launch of HyFive, a vertically integrated pure-play green hydrogen Company. The company, which is headquartered in Bilbao, Spain, will develop industrial scale, ultra-competitive green hydrogen and green ammonia facilities throughout Southern Europe, starting in Spain
- White Summit Capital has also recently partnered with Enagas and Fisterra Energy and presented a project that lays out plans for the start-up of a green hydrogen production plant of up to 237 MW in the Bay of Algeciras. This facility will supply green hydrogen to local industry, which has large consumers of hydrogen and natural gas.
RGreen Invest (Paris) - An asset management company focused on energy transition
- With 2.4 GW of assets under management and more than 500 projects supported in Europe, RGREEN INVEST is a key player in energy and climate transition investing.
- The company have recently announced the final closing of its INFRAGREEN IV fund. At a total of €670 million, the initial target of €500 million was largely exceeded. This French limited partnership fund, will invest in infrastructure projects relating to the green energy transition through equity and quasi-equity instruments.
Alantra (Madrid) - Investment banking and asset management firm
- Alantra has reached a first close with more than €80 million of commitments in their Klima Energy Transition Fund. The fund, which results from the partnership between Alantra and Enagás, aims to raise €150 million.
- Klima targets innovative, fast-growing companies accelerating the energy transition, operating in the following segments: low carbon gases (such as hydrogen, carbon capture, and biomethane); smart power grids, energy storage and renewable technologies; digitalization of the whole energy equation; and sustainable transportation.
Vauban Infrastructure Partners (Paris) – European Asset management company
- Vauban Infrastructure Partners’ reaches €2.5bn close on third core infrastructure fund “CIF III”, with demand well exceeding hard-cap. The fund will invest predominantly in brownfield mid-market opportunities in Europe with a focus on four main sectors: mobility, energy transition, social infrastructure and digital infrastructure
- Within the Energy transition space, Vauban invest in district heating, electricity grids, smart metering, water treatment and EV charging.
Energy and Infrastructure Investment Candidate Market
As a recruiter we are certainly seeing a rising demand for candidates who have skill sets in the energy transition space. This includes a knowledge of technologies such as hydrogen, electric vehicles, battery storage and distributed energy. Hydrogen is certainly a buzz word at the moment for us, with more and more clients exploring this technology. Pitchbook echoes this as it highlights hydrogen as number one in terms of emerging technologies in the climate tech space. Companies are not only trying to develop ways to efficiently utilise the power of hydrogen to generate energy; But they are also looking at ways to convert waste into usable energy including hydrogen but also biofuels and synthesis gas.
If you are currently hiring in Infrastructure and Energy and would like further insights into the market, please don’t hesitate to contact me on: Alanna Brown firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hydrogen Investment Pipeline Grows To $500 Billion In Response To Government Commitments To Deep Decarbonisation - Hydrogen Council
- Energy Transition (irena.org)
- Green hydrogen, a catalyst for the energy transition | Mirova
- The Spanish Hydrogen Strategy - WFW
- Fisterra Energy, Enagás and White Summit Capital Launch Green Hydrogen Project - Renewable Energy (gulfoilandgas.com)
- RGREEN INVEST / presentation
- Energy Transition | Alantra
- CP-Closing-CIF-III-Engl.pdf (vauban-ip.com)