BlackRock to buy Aussie battery storage developer

BlackRock and Akaysha Energy executives at the acquisition signing
BlackRock and Akaysha Energy executives

A fund under the management of US investment firm BlackRock Real Assets has agreed to acquire Australian battery energy storage system developer Akaysha Energy.

As part of the acquisition, BlackRock intends to commit over $1 billion of capital to support the build-out of over 1GW of battery storage assets across Akaysha’s nine projects in the National Electricity Market (NEM) in Australia.

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The investment will support the grid at a critical time in Australia’s energy transition and is expected to reduce over 15 million tons of CO2 equivalent emissions over the lifetime of the projects. 

Battery storage assets have the capacity to resolve the intermittency of renewable energy sources such as wind or solar power, as well as enhance the reliability of the grid by providing voltage management, system strength, inertia, and frequency control services. At full capacity, Akaysha’s projects will help accelerate the roll-out of a further 4GW of supply of clean, affordable renewable energy across Australia. 

This is the first battery storage investment made by BlackRock’s Climate Infrastructure business—part of BlackRock Real Assets—in the Asia-Pacific region. 

Established in 2021, Akaysha’s longer-term plans include developing future energy storage projects in other Asia-Pacific markets, with a near-term focus on Japan and Taiwan. Akaysha also has plans to add adjacent renewable energy opportunities (including developing green hydrogen assets) to its portfolio across multiple markets. 

BlackRock APAC co-head of climate infrastructure Charlie Reid said, “As renewable energy infrastructure continues to mature in Australia, investment is required in battery storage assets to ensure the resilience and reliability of the grid, especially with the continued earlier-than-expected retirement of coal-fired power stations.

“For our clients, we see tremendous long-term growth potential in the development of advanced battery storage assets across Australia and in other Asia-Pacific markets and look forward to working with Akaysha to ensure an orderly transition to a cleaner and secure energy future.” 

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Akaysha managing director Nick Carter said, “The Asia Pacific region is at the dawn of its energy transition from carbon emitting fossil fuels to intermittent renewable resources and we believe a successful shift to a more sustainable energy future is dependent on the use of large-scale battery storage.

“By tapping into BlackRock’s global capabilities and track record in climate infrastructure, we’re excited to fulfil our ambitions in accelerating the installation of utility-scale energy storage technologies that will mitigate the variability of renewable generation and deliver grid reliability and resilience to power system networks across Asia-Pacific.” 

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