ImpactAlpha, Jan. 10 – Mega funds are hunting for mega opportunities, we wrote in our lookahead at climate finance in 2022. Now comes Blackstone Infrastructure Partners with a $3 billion investment that is among the largest-ever in renewable energy.
The deal comes as the private equity firm is looking to burnish its green credentials. Chicago-based Invenergy Renewables develops and operates renewable energy projects around the globe.
It is developing the Samson Solar Energy Center in northeast Texas and the Traverse Wind Energy Center in Oklahoma, both among the largest such projects in the U.S.
Blackstone’s equity investment will make it a minority owner, alongside majority owners Invenergy and Canadian pension fund manager Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec.
Blackstone raised an initial $14 billion for the infrastructure fund in 2019 from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and other investors, and has a target of as much as $40 billion. The fund has been light on green investments, making investments of $1 billion or more of “permanent capital” in toll road, airport and oil and gas pipeline operators.
Blackstone’s Sean Klimczak said the firm is “committed to investing behind the energy transition” and supporting “the accelerated build-out of Invenergy’s clean energy portfolio.”
Blackstone has backed nearly $13 billion in energy transition investments since 2019 across its broader portfolio, it says. Blackstone portfolio company ClearGen commited $500 million in financing for microgrids last year. In 2020, the firm led Oatly’s $200 million funding round, and its energy division acquired battery storage company Apya.