Macquarie Capital bolsters energy storage drive with new hire

Macquarie Group’s investment arm has tapped Tesla veteran Greg Callman to lead its efforts in energy storage and distributed solutions, areas it predicts will have a ‘transformational role’ in the coming decade.

Macquarie Capital is gearing up its efforts in the energy storage sector, appointing Greg Callman senior managing director and global head of energy technology to lead the firm’s efforts in energy storage and distributed solutions.

According to a statement, Callman, who will be based in San Francisco, will develop projects and products globally on a wide range of energy solutions, including battery storage, microgrids, electric vehicles, distributed energy and consumer energy. He will report to Michael  Silverton, head of Macquarie Capital Americas, and Mark Dooley, Macquarie Capital’s global head of green energy.

Callman brings a wealth of experience in energy storage and electric vehicles to the newly-created position, having first joined US-based Tesla in 2011 where he held a number of roles, most recently that of global director of business development and market entry for energy products.

According to Macquarie’s statement, Callman developed the commercial approach that grew the multinational’s storage business in the US as well as in Europe, Australia and New Zealand “from the ground up”.

“Storage has a transformational role to play through the next decade, including shifting control to consumers and businesses on both the availability and cost of power,” Dooley said. “The addition of Greg Callman will help position us at the front of that transformation, better enabling us to deliver fast-evolving financial solutions to clients and partners in a rapidly changing industry.”

Asked how large a team Callman would be overseeing in his new role, a spokeswoman for the firm responded: “He will be working with other executives, building a core team and pulling in expertise as needed to ensure that we identify the most compelling opportunities and execute against them. The size of the team will reflect market opportunities, which we expect to be significant and diverse.”

Macquarie Capital is already active in energy storage. Last year, it partnered Advanced Microgrid Solutions and CIT to finance a 50MW fleet of behind-the-meter, battery storage systems located in grid-constrained pockets of the West Los Angeles Basin. It has also invested in a South Korean project that combined an existing 3MW solar farm and the construction of a 6.5MWh energy storage system.

Besides storage, however, the Macquarie group is also heavily involved in the renewables sector. Last year, Macquarie Infrastructure and Real assets acquired the UK government’s Green Investment Bank, and is also active in Asia’s offshore wind sector. In Taiwan alone, the division has a 2GW pipeline of offshore projects and earlier this month, reached financial close on Formosa I, a 128MW offshore wind farm, in which it is the largest shareholder. The firm also owns 50 percent of the second phase of the project, Formosa II, which will have a generating capacity of 120MW.