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Gresham House secures £140m in funding from Centrica and UKIB

October 30, 2023

Gresham House Secure Income Renewable Energy & Storage LP (SIRES) has been jointly backed by a £65 million cornerstone investment by Centrica and the UK Infrastructure Bank (UKIB) which confirmed its £75 million commitment on a match-funding basis as part of its overall £200 million support for energy storage funds.

SIRES is focused on developing collocated renewable generation and short duration electricity storage facilities, “aiming for these technologies to be connected to the National Grid at a faster pace and lower cost by sharing grid connection points”, a Gresham House statement said. The statement added that developing these technologies “in parallel on the same sites ensures battery storage helps avoid wasting precious renewable energy during periods of abundant supply, instead storing it for use when demand outstrips supply”.

For investors, collocation can earn larger, more diverse revenues compared with single-technology sites, delivering income from multiple return streams, including power purchase agreements (PPAs) for renewable assets and optimisation contracts with trading entities for battery storage, Gresham House said.

SIRES already has a 100 per cent-owned seed asset, a collocated solar and battery energy storage project in Hartlepool, County Durham, with 50 MWp solar capacity and 75 MWh of battery energy storage, which recently began construction. “Gresham House is also exploring a significant pipeline of other projects into which to deploy the new capital,” the statement added.

Peter Bolton, investment director, new energy at Gresham House, said: “With 21 operational storage projects and over 13 years’ experience in renewable investing, we are excited to grow Gresham House Secure Income Renewable Energy & Storage LP. The UK still needs to build substantial renewable energy capacity to support its transition from fossil fuels, and battery storage is the only commercially viable technology to store excess renewable power, balancing supply and demand. Collocating generation and storage is an essential way to accelerate the UK’s decarbonisation. It can deliver faster, cheaper operational projects and more flexible storage of excess renewable generation. The cornerstone investment from Centrica and this confirmed commitment from the UK Infrastructure Bank is a clear endorsement of our team’s expertise in this space and we are already underway deploying capital.”

John Flint, CEO of UK Infrastructure Bank said: “Increasing electricity storage capacity will help secure energy supply in the future and drive us along the path to net zero. We are making progress as a nation, but we need much more investment to meet necessary targets, and the clock is ticking. The bank’s commitment into this fund will help break down the barriers to greater, long-term investment across a range of storage sector and renewable energy opportunities.”

Chris O’Shea, CEO of Centrica, said: “We’re delighted to see UKIB formalise its role as a cornerstone investor alongside Centrica to deliver cleaner, greener and cheaper power to our customers in partnership with Gresham House. Working together, we will create new well-paid jobs by investing hundreds of millions of pounds in renewable energy generation and storage assets in the UK, driving the energy transition and strengthening the UK’s energy security.”