Daily Shorts: Plus Power raises $1.8 bn for battery projects, Rivian CEO calms fears over fund raise, and more
Australian pension fund Aware Super, the country's third largest, said it would invest up to A$2 billion ($1.3 billion) in a joint venture with Birdwood Energy to finance smaller-scale solar and battery installations. CEO Scott McGregor defined the scale as projects having 30-100 MW capacity. Aware Super portfolio manager Jired Zhou told reporters the company saw "tremendous opportunities "in the renewable energy transition sector. Australia is spending billions to rework its power grid away from its centralized model to adapt to the new age.
US company Plus Power announced it had raised $1.8 billion in additional funding for standalone battery storage projects. In a news release, the company said the funds would cover five projects totaling 1,040 MW of capacity. This includes $707 million in financing for the 250 MW Sierra Estrella Energy Storage facility in Arizona, and 700 MW of batteries for the ERCOT grid in Texas, spread over three projects, that would become operational next year.
US EV maker Rivian is seeking to raise $1.5 billion from markets, but CEO RJ Scaringe has downplayed fears about the company's financial health, telling reporters the idea was to raise funds before geopolitical risks made borrowing costlier. Rivian raised $1.3 billion in March has said it has enough money till 2025. The company is backed by Amazon, which recently revealed it had 10,000 Rivian vans in its US and European fleets, against a target of 100,000 by 2030.
General Motors announced it would delay production of electric pickup trucks at the Orion Township, Michigan, plant by a year because of flat demand for EVs, in another sign of oversaturation in the US electric vehicle market. Last week, Ford Motor Co axed one shift at a plant that made the F-150 Lightning EV pickup, after announcing a pivot to hybrid models in July. Market leader Tesla, which unveiled its Cybertruck pickup some months ago, is expected to begin deliveries of the model this year.