AGL appoints new energy head

The Australian utility, which recently launched a A$1bn renewables tie-up with QIC, has also added a non-executive director to its board.

Sydney-listed AGL Energy has appointed Elisabeth Brinton as the new executive general manager of its energy division. 

Brinton's role will commence in mid-September. AGL's energy unit, which was set up in 2014, currently comprises rooftop solar, commercial energy services, energy storage, electric vehicle services and digital metering businesses.

The company recently launched a pilot 'virtual' solar plant , made up of a cloud-connected system controlling rooftop solar panels and 1,000 batteries, in South Australia. It aims to develop more than 1GW of renewables generation through its Powering Australian Renewables Fund, which is backed by QIC.

Brinton has more than 25 years of experience growing companies and businesses across sectors including energy, technology, consumer food products and agriculture. Most recently, she was the corporate strategy office chief for New York-listed Pacific Gas and Electricity Company (PG&E), where she helped steer the wheel of regulated electricity and gas networks. 

Prior to PG&E, she served as chief customer officer for SMUD, a US-based utility. She also oversaw global marketing for LoudCloud, a web infrastructure company, during its initial public offering. 

“Elisabeth is well regarded in the field and is a strong leader with a proven track record of successful innovation, execution and value creation across multiple industries. Her contribution will add to the depth of talent and skill at the executive level and be an advantage to AGL as both it and the industry undergo transformation,” said Andy Vesey, managing director and chief executive of AGL. 

Her future role at AGL is currently held by Alistair Preston, who will continue as executive general manager for organisational transformation. 

In other news, Diane Smith-Gander, currently the chairman of infrastructure services company Broadspectrum, will join AGL's board as a non-executive director to replace Bruce Phillips, who will be retiring from the board in September. Smith-Gander, stepping down from her role at Broadspectrum after its takeover by Ferrovial, is also a non-executive director of Wesfarmers, the Australian conglomerate.