JP Morgan buys into 10.7GW solar-plus-storage pipeline

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8minutenergy Renewables, J.P. Morgan Asset Management and an affiliate of Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners have entered into a joint venture that will provide equity capital for 8minutenergy’s 10.7GW portfolio of utility PV and storage projects.

This joint venture, along with investment from 8minutenergy CEO, Tom Buttgenbach, provides over US$200 million in capital commitments.

8minutenergy is wholly owned by Buttgenbach and his management team as of 6 December 2018. Buttgenbach, who co-founded 8minutenergy in 2009, led a management buyout of the shares of fellow co-founder Martin Hermann last week.

Buttgenbach noted: “We thank J.P. Morgan and Upper Bay for bringing the long-term focus and financial resources to enable us to unleash the full potential of our pipeline and incredibly talented team.

“We have been the largest and most successful solar developer in California, and have expanded our cost leadership across the US, developing a solar and storage project pipeline of 10.7GW. A testament to our low-cost leadership is the 420MW Eagle Shadow Mountain Solar plant in Nevada, which at 2.3 cents/kWh fixed for 25 years, holds the record for lowest-price solar PPA in the nation. In Texas, which is a purely price-driven competitive market, we will start construction of our 280MW Holstein 1 power plant in the second quarter of 2019.”

Michael Lehman, managing director and portfolio manager of J.P. Morgan Asset Management, said: “We’ve been very impressed with the 8minutenergy team and their ability to deliver sustainable returns through their utility-scale solar projects. 8minutenergy has a premier development process that consistently delivers attractive solar projects with long-term, contracted cash flows.”

8minutenergy also announced that Alex O’Cinneide, founder and CEO of Gore Street Capital, will rejoin the Company’s advisory board.

O’Cinneide said: “I am excited to rejoin the advisory board of the company as it continues its extraordinary growth path. I look forward to leveraging the experience of financing utility-scale energy storage projects for the company, gained through running the first publicly traded fund established to invest in diversified utility-scale energy storage projects.”

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