Nippon Koei targets 100MW of UK battery projects with energy storage JV

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Zenobe Energy is among the UK players to have received significant investment from Japanese companies in battery storage and smart energy. image: Zenobe Energy.

Nippon Koei, one of Japan’s largest engineering firms, has formed a joint venture with a British battery storage firm to construct two 50MW behind-the-meter energy storage projects in the UK.

Nippon Koei revealed earlier this week that its Netherlands-based Nippon Koei Energy Europe (NKEE) subsidiary had partnered with RNA Energy to establish two special purpose vehicles to house two specific investments, totalling more than £25 million. 

The joint venture, which has yet to be named, will be held 80% by NKEE and 20% by RNA Energy. 

NKEE expects to receive funds for EPC services related to the two projects’ development as well as ongoing commercial returns. 

But perhaps more interestingly, the firm is hoping that the two projects will enhance its track record in participating in battery storage projects in the UK, hinting that Nippon Koei sees potential growth in the country’s utility-scale battery storage market.

Nippon Koei is no stranger to the UK’s market and is to support NEC Energy Solutions in the EPC duties of two other large-scale behind the meter projects in the UK.

The deal is also representative of a wider trend of Japanese companies investing in the rapidly-evolving UK energy scene. 

Japanese utility Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) has invested in battery storage firms Zenobe and Moixa as well as energy tech start-up Electron over the course of the last year, while Moixa also confirmed a major partnership with Japanese automotive giant Honda earlier this month.

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