In another sign of the perceived emerging opportunities in the offshore wind industry, Apollo Global Management, which is seen as one of the investment industry’s leading alternative investment managers, announced that it has made a significant investment in the sector.
Apollo reported that through the funds it manages they had committed to invest up to $265 million in the offshore wind development company US Wind. Apollo will be funding development and construction costs associated with a major offshore wind energy project off the coast of Maryland. Founded in 2011, US Wind is majority owned by Renexia SpA, a renewable energy development company in Italy and a subsidiary of Toto Holding SpA.
“US Wind is a premier developer at the forefront of an offshore wind energy industry that is rapidly expanding in both the US and abroad, as interests coalesce around clean energy,” said Geoffrey Strong, Senior Partner and Co-Head of Infrastructure and Natural Resources at Apollo. “For Apollo, this is an exciting partnership that leverages our track record in renewable energy infrastructure investments and underlines the Firm’s strong commitment to sustainability.”
US Wind obtained a federal lease from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in 2014 to develop up to 1.3 GW of offshore wind power generation in an area of approximately 80,000 acres off the coast of Maryland. The first phase of the project will have a capacity of 270 MW, enough to power more than 75,000 Maryland homes.
US Wind plans to sell electricity and Offshore Wind Renewable Energy Credits under the Maryland Offshore Wind Energy Act of 2013. According to Apollo, the project is poised to be a key contributor of renewable energy required under Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. Anticipated to come online in early 2024, the project has a more than 25-year useful life and is expected to create thousands of jobs.
Apollo has a strong track record of investing in both segments of the maritime and infrastructure industry. According to the company over the past 30 years, it has invested more than $20 billion in infrastructure-related opportunities focusing primarily on opportunities in power and renewables, communications, midstream energy, and transportation.
In 2008, Apollo also invested $1 billion in Norwegian Cruise Line acquiring a 50 percent stake from Star Cruises (a subsidiary of Genting). Apollo’s team oversaw the transformation of Norwegian and later the merger of Oceana Cruises and Regent Seven Seas, which Apollo owned, into Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. Apollo began selling its shares of Norwegian in 2013 completing its very successful investment at the end of 2018.
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