Zenobe Energy, one of the UK’s leading independent owners and operators of battery storage and provider of services to electric vehicle operators, has secured a £150m investment from Infracapital, the infrastructure equity investment arm of M&G Plc, to support the company’s growth. The committed funding will allow Zenobe to help to accelerate the UK’s transition to a green energy system.
Infracapital’s funding will support the growth of Zenobe’s grid-scale battery services and electric vehicle and charging infrastructure services, ultimately helping the transport and energy sectors to address key challenges associated with climate change.
Combined with debt facilities, the company estimates that this will enable it to deploy around £450 million in these sectors, further accelerating the utilization of batteries to support renewable power generation and the electrification of vehicle fleets in the UK and overseas. This total funding would enable Zenobe to support customers with at least 500MWhr of additional grid connected batteries, and up to a further 1,000 electric buses or vehicles and associated infrastructure software systems over the next 18 to 24 months.
Infracapital’s funding and proven infrastructure experience, combined with Zenobe’s innovative solutions, will help accelerate the take up of electric vehicles and the investment in batteries in the UK, which is essential if the UK is to meet legally binding climate change targets and improve air quality across the country. It will also support the company’s expansion internationally.
This investment follows on from the raise of c.£40m of equity from private investors and the leading early stage infrastructure investor Tiger Infrastructure Partners LP in 2017; £25m of equity from JERA Storage BV and the first non-recourse debt facility against battery storage projects from Santander Group (£25m), both completed in 2019; and receivables financing from NatWest Group (£20m) in June 2020, to support Zenobe’s EV fleet business.
Zenobe has 170MW of grid scale batteries in operation or construction, which provide a range of services including balancing, power and reactive power services in the UK to National Grid and the DNOs. The company also utilises its knowledge and experience of batteries to provide its industrial and commercial customers with services including load shifting, storage and off grid operations to optimise their use of power.
Zenobe is a leader in the transport sector, supporting over 100 electric buses and finalising contracts with operators to support a further 250 electric vehicles by summer 2021. The company provides competitively priced end-to-end services to the electric vehicle fleet operators including the design, installation, financing and operation of electrical charging infrastructure in the depot, the financing and optional replacement of the battery in the electric vehicle and the financing of the non-battery components of the electric vehicle.
Nicholas Beatty, Founder Director, Zenobe Energy, said:
“This investment by Infracapital demonstrates Zenobe’s continuing leadership in the battery sector. With our focus on innovation and provision of solutions to customers that combine our technology, operational and financing capabilities, this investment will be crucial in allowing us to achieve our growth ambitions in the UK and abroad.
“By driving the adoption of batteries across the transport, infrastructure and utilities sectors, we will help accelerate the uptake of renewable energy, ultimately enabling the transition to a green energy system, both in the UK and internationally.”
Andy Matthews, Head of Greenfield at Infracapital said:
“We are delighted to announce our investment in Zenobe Energy and to play a role in delivering clean and reliable electric vehicle and battery storage solutions. Zenobe is a leader in its field, with a strong environmental purpose and substantial growth prospects.
“This investment is indicative of the significant opportunity to build, deliver and operate essential greenfield infrastructure across Europe, where we see considerable scope to deploy further funds in the coming months and years, creating long-term value for our investors.”
Emil Henry, CEO of Tiger Infrastructure, said:
“We applaud Zenobe’s management team on this critical milestone, and we are pleased to welcome Infracapital to Zenobe’s innovative and market-leading platform.”
James Pincus, Partner at PwC said:
“We are delighted to have acted as financial advisor to Zenobe on this transformational transaction. Zenobe has set itself apart from the competition with its unique service offering and ability to adapt and explore new markets. The strong investor appetite we saw through the process demonstrates the significant market opportunity for EV fleet and battery storage solutions as the UK and many other countries seek to implement cleaner energy solutions to achieve their Net Zero targets. We believe that in Infracapital, Zenobe has chosen the perfect partner to help them drive the business going forward.”