BlackRock keen on C&I PV, storage as new renewable fund hits record close

Image credit: Jonathan Riley / Unsplash

Rooftop solar, energy storage and other less-mainstream green energy technologies are among the targets of a new colossal renewable fund, the creation of the world’s largest asset manager.

BlackRock – a group claiming this year to hold nearly US$7 trillion in assets – said this week it has amassed over US$1 billion in its efforts to raise capital for its latest fund for global renewables, the third of a series it launched in 2011.

This article requires Premium SubscriptionBasic (FREE) Subscription

Unlock unlimited access for 12 whole months of distinctive global analysis

Photovoltaics International is now included.

  • Regular insight and analysis of the industry’s biggest developments
  • In-depth interviews with the industry’s leading figures
  • Unlimited digital access to the PV Tech Power journal catalogue
  • Unlimited digital access to the Photovoltaics International journal catalogue
  • Access to more than 1,000 technical papers
  • Discounts on Solar Media’s portfolio of events, in-person and virtual

Or continue reading this article for free

The first US$1 billion, collected from 35 American, European and Asian institutional investors, takes the Global Renewable Power III (GRP III) fund closer to its US$2.5 billion final target. The “record” raise was achieved within six months from GRP III’s launch in Q2 2019, BlackRock told PV Tech.

Contacted by this publication, a spokesperson provided a timetable for when GRP III should hit final close – around Q4 2020, they explained – and shared specifics on where and how the fund will invest as it seeks to grow a portfolio in global renewables.

According to the spokesperson, GRP III will focus on wind and solar plays in OECD markets, a group spanning Europe, the US, Turkey, Australia, Japan, Israel, Chile and others. In principle, the fund’s US$2.5 billion pot will be equally split between the US, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.

Quizzed over the solar investment highlights of the new fund, the spokesperson added: “GRP III continues to evolve with the market, and we see increased opportunity in commercial & industrial (C&I) solar, alongside adjacent sectors such as energy storage.”  

Global financiers set sights on batteries, grid investment

The addition of a third fund looks set to further grow the sizeable portfolio BlackRock has assembled in the renewable space. The firm claims to have invested in 250-plus wind and solar projects worldwide via the GRP platform, a fleet it says could cover the power needs of 19 million homes.

Over the past year, the trillions-worth giant has been active on the utility-scale front, with moves in the UK, Mexico and others. At the Large Scale Solar Europe summit in Lisbon in March, the firm appeared confident in the future success of subsidy-free solar across all European markets.

The past few months have seen BlackRock also target small-scale solar specialists in the US. The investor has come to control significant portfolios via the purchase of a stake in NYC-based CleanCapital in April and a separate holding in Distributed Solar Development in July.

BlackRock links its green energy ambitions to the “US$10 trillion opportunity” created by the global transition to PV and wind. Having noted the rising levels of renewables worldwide, the firm is also keen on the underinvested technologies – storage, distribution – needed to shore up power grids.

The asset management giant’s move towards underfunded, less-mature renewable segments mirrors comparable shifts by state-run financiers. The European Investment Bank and Australia’s CEFC have both signaled plans to start redeploying support onto storage batteries and grid stability.

The refocusing on storage funding coincides with progress with the economic viability of these systems. In early November, consultancy Lazard identified drops in levelised costs of storage (LCOS), particularly for lithium-ion batteries and solar-plus-storage hybrids.

The prospects and challenges of solar's new era in Europe and beyond will take centre stage at Solar Media's Solar Finance & Investment Europe (London, 5-6 February) and Large Scale Solar Europe 2020 (Lisbon, on 31 March-1 April 2020).

8 October 2024
San Francisco Bay Area, USA
PV Tech has been running an annual PV CellTech Conference since 2016. PV CellTech USA, on 8-9 October 2024 is our second PV CellTech conference dedicated to the U.S. manufacturing sector. The event in 2023 was a sell out success and 2024 will once again gather the key stakeholders from PV manufacturing, equipment/materials, policy-making and strategy, capital equipment investment and all interested downstream channels and third-party entities. The goal is simple: to map out PV manufacturing in the U.S. out to 2030 and beyond.

Read Next

May 24, 2024
Solar project developer Recurrent Energy has secured a €674 million (US$730 million) revolving credit facility to expand its European solar and battery energy storage system (BESS) portfolio.
May 24, 2024
Ørsted has closed a US$680 million tax equity financing with JP Morgan for a solar project, alongside a solar-plus-storage project.
May 24, 2024
US power distribution company Entergy Louisiana has received approval from the Louisiana Public Service Commission (LPSC) to add up to 3GW of solar PV.
May 24, 2024
US independent power producer Pivot Energy and electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer Rivian have partnered to build 60MW of community solar in Illinois, US.
May 23, 2024
Spanish firm Acciona Energía has commissioned its 458WM Red-Tailed Hawk PV project in the US state of Texas.
May 23, 2024
The flurry of recent tariff changes for solar imports to the US is likely to make products from Southeast Asia less attractive to buyers, according to renewables analysis firm Clean Energy Associates (CEA).

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
May 29, 2024
11am (EDT) / 5pm (CEST)
Solar Media Events
June 4, 2024
London, UK
Upcoming Webinars
June 11, 2024
3:00 PM (BST) / 4:00 PM (CEST)
Solar Media Events
July 2, 2024
Athens, Greece