Published in: 2011 - A Review of Cleantech Equity Deals, January 2012
There was plenty of news flow in the marine energy sector during 2011, with test devices being deployed and licences being awarded. Governments around the world are backing this sector.
The year began with the news in January that the UK Technology Strategy Board had awarded funding of over £2.5 million for three R&D projects, in wave and tidal stream energy technologies, to Bauer Renewables Ltd, Pelamis Wave Power Ltd and Marine Current Turbines Ltd. And on the other side of the world, Langlee secured financing of NZ$312,000 from the New Zealand Government’s Marine Energy Deployment Fund for a Stewart Island project.
The Scottish Investment Bank, the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, provides more than grant funding and is an equity investor in companies such as AWS and Aquamarine Power. However, it typically comes in at an early stage and larger private sector investors need to follow through to provide the backing needed for commercial deployment.
In this context, the large industrials are becoming the major players. Where previously utilities were important investors in the marine energy sector, 2011 saw a consolidation of the trend towards large industrials becoming involved, with Siemens upping its stake in Marine Current Turbines (MCT), ABB investing further in Aquamarine Power and Alstom acquiring 40% of AWS.