ENERGY STORAGE

KKR acquires majority stake in US solar-plus-storage developer Avantus

March 21, 2024

Investment firm KKR has acquired a majority stake in Avantus, a US developer of large utility-scale solar and solar-plus-storage projects.

Following the close of the transaction, KKR and existing investor EIG, an institutional investor in the global energy and infrastructure sectors, will be the sole equity investors in Avantus.

“Both equity sponsors are dedicated to supporting the next phase of Avantus’ growth, including having secured commitments for a substantial development financing facility alongside their equity commitments to the company, totalling upwards of $1 billion in the aggregate,” a statement said.

Founded in 2009, Avantus is involved in solar and energy storage development throughout the project lifecycle – from selecting a project site through to operations – and owns a project pipeline of 30 GW of solar and 94 GWh of battery storage, enough to provide 20 million people with clean, reliable power, the statement added.

Charlie Gailliot, partner and co-head of global climate strategy at KKR, said: “To support an economy-wide energy transition, there is a need to significantly expand renewable energy generation by 2050 and enable grid electrification. Because of these tailwinds, we see enormous opportunity for Avantus. The company’s impressive team and development track record, coupled with its mature project pipeline, set it apart from other renewables developers.”

Cecilio Velasco, managing director in KKR’s Infrastructure team, added: “We look forward to working with Avantus and EIG and leveraging KKR’s substantial resources and operational expertise to accelerate the growth of the business. Today marks the beginning of a new era for the company, one that will help further the transition of the power sector through sustainable, clean energy solutions.”

Blair Thomas, EIG Chairman and CEO, said: “EIG has been pleased to support Avantus since 2021, through capital solutions uniquely tailored to the company’s needs and goals. Throughout our partnership, Avantus has maintained and extended its position as one of the leading and most innovative renewables developers in the United States, helping to spur the industry’s rapid growth and expanding access to affordable, reliable and clean energy. We are excited to continue working with the Avantus team and are pleased to welcome KKR as we pursue the next phases of Avantus’ growth and evolution.”

Patrick Goff, CFO at Avantus, commented: “Solar is the fastest growing electricity source in the US, and along with energy storage, will serve as the backbone of a modern electric grid that is clean, reliable and resilient. KKR’s investment provides Avantus the financial backing and expertise to execute on our ambitious portfolio and lead the energy transition across the Western United States.”