January 24, 2024, Sydney / Singapore – Private equity firm Gaw Capital Partners and BW ESS, a leading global investor in the energy storage sector and part of BW Group, announced today the establishment of Valent Energy, an investment platform in Australia with over 1.6GW of utility-scale battery projects, including three in Victoria and New South Wales that are fully approved and ready-to-build.
In addition to Valent Energy, BW ESS has built a portfolio of over 1.5GW of battery energy storage (BESS) projects in the UK and Nordic countries, of which over 400MWh are under construction. Established in 2021, BW ESS is part of BW Group, a global energy and maritime group, including seven listed companies with a combined market cap of over US$11 billion. BW ESS leverages decades of experience in critical energy infrastructure investments within BW Group, combining the benefits of scale and geographical diversification, with best-in-class suppliers, contractors and financial institutions, to deliver market leading BESS projects.
Gaw Capital Partners is a private equity firm and asset manager with US$33.7 billion under management. Although primarily focused on real estate, it has recently diversified into various climate tech and renewable energy related investments, including the acquisition of GMR Energy, a developer of BESS projects across several states in Australia.
Gaw Capital and BW ESS will pool their resources in Valent Energy, commit and arrange capital of over AUD 2 billion to build the BESS projects, as well as develop and grow its captive pipeline of development assets. At this time, the portfolio consists of 8 batteries and one solar PV farm project, of which three batteries, the 240MW Mornington BESS, 250MW Pine Lodge BESS and 120MW Apsley BESS, have secured both development and connection approvals and are finalizing contracting to commence construction, with three other projects expected to secure connection approvals early next year.
Christina Gaw, Managing Principal, Global Head of Capital Markets & Cochair of Alternative Investments of Gaw Capital Partners, said “We are delighted to partner with BW in building this battery storage platform together. I am confident that Valent will combine our respective strengths in industry and capital markets to underwrite a successful delivery of the battery assets that are urgently needed in Australia’s energy transitioning space.”
Erik Strømsø, Managing Director of BW Renewables and CEO of BW ESS, added “We are excited about the establishment of Valent Energy with Gaw Capital, as it forms part of BW’s commitment to the green energy transition. By leveraging the sector expertise, industry relationships and international experience of BW ESS, Valent will be well positioned to accelerate the growth of Australia’s energy storage capacity, enabling its transition to clean energy.”
“With the rollout of substantial government policy to support battery projects, and the record periods of negative prices during daytime solar floods, the moment could not be a timelier for Valent to build large scale batteries.” Said Oliver Yates, Head of Australia for Gaw Capital Climate Tech and Energy Transition, and Director, Valent Energy Limited.
Dispatchable grid scale energy storage is critical for the shift to intermittent renewable energy generation by providing grid stability. Australia’s Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen has said “Firming infrastructure is the key to enabling the rollout of more renewable generation, the cheapest, cleanest form of energy available….” and ultimately reducing greenhouse gas emissions on a national scale. Gaw Capital Partners and BW ESS are committed to investment in and expansion of Valent Energy and its role in Australia’s energy transition.
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About Valent Energy
Valent Energy is an investor, developer and operator of grid scale energy storage projects. We have committed over $2 bn to develop and grow our pipeline of projects to enable Australia’s energy transition. The company’s portfolio currently consists of 8 batteries and one solar PV farm project, of which three batteries, the 240MW Mornington BESS, 250MW Pine Lodge BESS and 120MW Apsley BESS, have secured both development and connection, with three other projects expected to secure connection approvals in early 2025.
Valent Energy is a partnership between private equity firm Gaw Capital and BW ESS, a leading global investor in the energy storage sector, part of BW Group.
About Gaw Capital Partners
Gaw Capital Partners is a uniquely positioned private equity fund management company focusing predominantly on real estate markets in Asia Pacific and other high barrier-to-entry markets globally.
Specializing in adding strategic value to under-utilized real estate through redesign and repositioning, Gaw Capital runs an integrated business model with its own in-house asset management operating platforms in commercial, hospitality, property development, logistics, IDC and Education. The firm’s investments span the entire spectrum of real estate sectors, including residential development, offices, retail malls, serviced apartments, hotels, logistics warehouses and IDC projects.
Gaw Capital has raised seven commingled funds targeting the APAC region since 2005. The firm also manages value-add/opportunistic funds in the US, a Pan-Asia hospitality fund, a European hospitality fund, a Growth Equity Fund and it also provides services for credit investments and separate account direct investments globally. Gaw Capital commands assets of US$33.7 billion under management as of Q3 2023.
About BW ESS
BW ESS is a dedicated energy storage business with a globally diversified project portfolio comprising over 400 MWh under construction and over 1GW of ready to build projects. Through its network of developer investments and partnerships, it is further supporting the advancement of pipelines totaling multiple gigawatts.
The company combines the benefits of scale and centralisation at a platform level, with local development partners, suppliers, contractors and financial institutions, to deliver market leading BESS projects.
BW ESS is a part of BW Group, a global energy and maritime infrastructure company with a growing portfolio of clean energy investments, including batteries, solar, offshore wind and biogas.