Business Irish

Wednesday 19 June 2019

KPMG partner raising €3bn green tech fund

€3bn fund convened by Mike Hayes will back cutting-edge green technology innovators

Mike Hayes, KPMG
Mike Hayes, KPMG

John Reynolds

An Irish partner at KPMG, Mike Hayes, who is the advisory firm's global head of renewables, is leading an initiative to raise €3bn to invest in cutting-edge green technology innovation across the globe.

Former Intel veteran Philip Moynagh, who managed Quark microchip production in Co Kildare, has also been appointed to the evaluation board of the Sustainable Energy Innovation Fund (SEIF), the Sunday Independent has learned.

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Hayes said the fund, which is a collaboration with the World Economic Forum, will comprise 25pc public and 75pc private investment, in a so-called 'blended finance' model.

Utility firms, oil and gas giants and leading manufacturers are seen as potential investors. Philanthropists, family offices and venture capital firms have also been approached by the fund, which is aiming to launch in Davos next January.

An investment manager for the fund will be appointed in the next few months, it is believed. The fund could potentially be run from here, though a number of countries will be in the running.

Four key areas with investment potential have been identified by the fund, it is understood: energy efficiency; hydrogen power; energy storage and biomass; and bioenergy and biofuels.

Innovators with unique business models which are transformative will also be considered for investment.

It will invest in more risky early-stage as well as late-stage innovation, and every investment must have the potential to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

All of the SEIF investments will be required to have the potential to be implemented in developing countries, Hayes said.

The European Commission, on behalf of all EU countries, is already collaborating in an initiative, Mission Innovation, along with 24 other countries, to reinvigorate green energy and technology investment. It was launched in Paris in 2015, but Ireland is not currently listed as one of its member countries.

Each Mission member committed to double their related research and development investments in a number of priority areas by 2021. Since then, relevant investment by the member countries has increased by €4.1bn since 2015, the organisation claims.

The International Energy Agency has identified that out of 39 energy-related technologies, only seven - including energy storage, lighting, solar power and electric vehicles - were on track to meaningfully impact on climate change commitments and help the world reach the Paris 2015 target of preventing global temperatures from rising more than two degrees.

Sunday Indo Business

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