Engie SA agreed to buy Broad Reach Power LLC, a private equity-backed US battery company, as part of a strategy to expand in electricity storage and renewables.
The purchase from Apollo Global Management Inc. and EnCap Investments will bolster Engie’s presence in states such as Texas and California, which are working to shore up energy security after suffering blackouts in recent years. The French utility said it’ll take a $1.6 billion hit to net debt from the deal.
The acquisition gives Engie 350 megawatts of operating assets, as well as 880 megawatts under construction and a further 1.7 gigawatts of advanced-stage projects, the company said Thursday. It already has renewable energy and power storage operations in the US.
Energy firms are increasingly adding battery capacity to store surging wind and solar output and help grid operators meet demand when usage peaks or other power sources fail. The Texas network, which collapsed dramatically during storms in 2021, is regularly strained by soaring summer consumption, while California is building storage capacity alongside more solar farms.
The Broad Reach deal, which Engie expects to complete in the fourth quarter, will support the company’s 2030 goal for 10 gigawatts of global battery capacity.
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In June, Engie commissioned a 150-megawatt battery system at its former Hazelwood coal-fired power plant in Australia. The facility will be able to store the equivalent of an hour’s electricity from rooftop solar from 30,000 homes in the state of Victoria and inject this power into the grid during peak demand.
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