Mainstream Capital to bypass banks and raise renewable energy finance direct from pension funds

Eddie O’Connor, Chief Executive, Mainstream Renewable Power
Eddie O’Connor, Chief Executive, Mainstream Renewable Power

Mainstream Renewable Power is today launching a new business venture called Mainstream Capital in a bid to gain access to finance at better rates than those offered by bankers.

The new venture is targeted specifically at pension funds and insurance companies which want to benefit from government-backed, long-term cash flows by investing directly into the Company’s wind and solar projects.

As Europe’s leading independent offshore wind developer Mainstream Renewable Power (MRP)  is developing just under 8GW of offshore wind projects in England, Scotland and Germany with 4.45GW of secured grid connection for these offshore projects.

MRP employs more than 180 experienced staff across four continents with offices in Berlin, Cape Town, Chicago, Dublin, Glasgow, Johannesburg, London, Santiago and Toronto.

 Eddie O’Connor, Chief Executive, Mainstream Renewable Power, said its size and track record of delivering top quality projects afford it the opportunity to set up its own platform to attract investment.

 He said: “Mainstream’s track record means we can now secure access to longer-term, more reliable funding by developing its own capital raising arm.

 “As the business has grown, the risk-adjusted return has moved from private equity towards long-term, stable infrastructure returns.”

He added that Mainstream was now well recognised for its success in delivering top quality renewable projects and so it was now more straightforward to attract the interest of pension funds and insurance companies from the outset of any plans.

“We have built a credible business. When you get this big, there is an exercise in corporate branding in the sense that people know that we know what we’re doing. We have a great track record and our projects allow pension funds and insurance companies to take a sensible outlook over a 20 year period,” he said.

Stephen Nolan, Chairman of the Sustainability Gathering event held in Dublin castle, welcomed the Mainstream announcement. He said that the Irish government had set a target of increasing environmental assets under management, deployed or domiciled from Ireland from today’s US$20 billion to $200 billion by 2017 and that initiatives like this all added to Ireland’s environmental finance expertise.

Nolan said this target was achievable due to the combination of two key factors — a world class renewables and clean-tech enterprise sector encompassing Irish companies like Mainstream that have been globally active pioneers in the area for decades –  and the existence of a world-class international financial services centre.

 “The combined expertise in the financial and enterprise sectors is what sets Ireland apart from other competitors,’’ he said. “A new breed of asset manager is being born.”

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