Iona Capital: corporate power buyers are key to new green projects

A good corporate buyer taking the power from a renewable energy project is becoming more important than government support, according to Nick Ross, director at Iona Capital.

In an exclusive interview with New Power Report, Ross, whose company directs pension fund investment towards bioenergy projects, says he is looking for supply deals via private wire.

As regards government support, the Capacity Market looks “completely oversubscribed,” he says. As for Contracts for Difference: “There is a lot you have to do for a CFD and it is quite a straightjacket on the project. What we concluded is that it is marginal.” Bioenergy projects are partly funded by ‘gate fees’ as they divert waste from landfill. They may also be supported by the Renewable Heat Incentive, but Ross says the “major, major problem” is that scheme administrator E-Serve has a logjam in applications that has seen delays in accreditation of up to 18 months.

Now Ross is looking for direct links between project and customer. “Our strategy is more focused on helping corporate meet their energy goals than selling back to the grid. At the end of the day these contacts are all about having strong counterparties to protect you.”

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