HSBC pension scheme targets UK renewables

The British pension will invest more than $320m in large-scale solar and smaller onshore wind assets.

HSBC UK Pension scheme has selected renewables-focused investment firm Greencoat Capital to invest £250 million ($324.4 million; €283.9 million) in the country’s renewable energy sector on its behalf.

The capital will be invested in large-scale solar and smaller onshore wind assets, the London-based investment firm said in a statement without providing further details.

Asked whether any of the capital would be deployed through the firm’s existing funds, Greencoat Capital said it would either be in managed accounts or invested in unlisted funds.

However, one source told Infrastructure Investor that some of the capital would be deployed through Greencoat Solar Fund II, which as of June was close to reaching its £1 billion target, while investments in onshore wind would be made through a new vehicle unrelated to any of Greencoat’s existing funds.

The decision by HSBC UK Pension Scheme to invest in the country’s renewables sector is in line with an increasing appetite that UK pension funds are demonstrating in regards to the sector, according to Greencoat’s spokesman Tom Rayner.

“Pension schemes are interested in the cashflows that renewables are able to deliver and we continue to see increasing interest and appetite from them,” Rayner said.

“They see the asset class maturing and increasingly becoming a staple part of any infrastructure portfolio.”

Founded in 2009, Greencoat Capital’s renewables portfolio has a combined capacity of more than 1.5GW. Its total AUM, which also includes private equity investments, currently stands at £3 billion.