London, 24th of November 2023
On November 16th Asper held its 2023 Investor Day in London. A day meant for exchanges with our clients, it was filled with reflections on the outlook of energy transition investing, the successes of the Asper platforms, as well as challenges and opportunities to come.
More than thirty institutional investors joined Asper’s Investor Day which started with presentations from Asper’s founders and guest speakers, followed by dedicated focus sessions for each of Asper’s funds: Duke, Dorothea, Columba, and Iona.
Some key insights from the plenary session include:
- Onshore wind remains a key technology to deliver on decarbonisation goals. Onshore wind is intrinsically needed for the energy transition, with installations globally expected to grow at a much higher pace than offshore wind, which is afflicted by significant cost challenges. With onshore wind particularly suited to Asper’s platform-building strategy, we expect to continue seeing attractive opportunities in the sector in years to come. Asper currently manages two co-investment partnerships focused on greenfield onshore wind investments in Ireland and the UK with committed capital of over 350 million euros.
- The large untapped potential of district heating: Heating and cooling represents over half of the world’s energy consumption and a significant part of the GHG emissions. Many governments are making decarbonization of heating an immediate priority and district heating is clearly one of the key solutions. With Asper’s c.10 years of proven track record in district heating investments, we back entrepreneurs to build platforms of low-carbon heat networks into sought-after sustainable infrastructure assets. At present, Asper manages over 500 million euros of capital dedicated to district heating investments and we see much potential to expand into other jurisdictions.
After the plenary session featuring presentations from Asper’s team members, two distinguished guest speakers, Lord Callanan and Aurélie Beauvais shared their perspectives.
“Heat networks are not only a huge part of the puzzle, but they also provide a fantastic investment opportunity”.
Lord Callanan, UK Ministry for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance presented his view on the state of UK’s low carbon investments. Lord Callanan shared the UK’s government perspectives on current decarbonisation goals and specifically on the potential of district heating. Through multiple policies (e.g., zoning), the UK is looking to heavily foster the transition from gas heating to low carbon alternatives, including heat pumps, biogas, and heat networks. To do so, the UK government sees private capital as having a huge role to play in achieving net zero infrastructure, and is committed to creating an attractive environment for investments and R&D efforts to power this transition.
“Heating & Cooling is not only huge, it is also extremely fossil dependent”.
Aurélie Beauvais, Managing Director of the Euroheat & Power Association shared her expertise in the growth potential of district heating in Europe, the appetite for investments in this sector across the EU and the features that make it an attractive asset class. The rollout of heating and cooling networks being Europe’s best alternatives to reduce gas demand, Aurelie highlighted the fundamental role of private financing to accelerate its decarbonisation.
In essence, both guest speakers emphasized the urgency to speed up investments into clean electricity and heat in order to achieve net zero goals, and the key role that private capital will play. Asper is grateful to its clients and partners for the support over the last year, and committed to building business that create value while delivering on the energy transition.