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John Laing ditches wind, solar on limited value creation potential

Image by:John Laing Group (www.laing.com).

March 4 (Renewables Now) - UK-based infrastructure investor John Laing Group Plc (LON:JLG) will cease investing in standalone wind and solar projects globally but it is looking at other infrastructure opportunities created by the energy transition.

The company has invested roughly GBP 850 million (USD 1.09bn/EUR 975.7m) in 38 wind and solar projects in Europe, the US and Australia in the past decade. The decision to quit follows a re-assessment of the risk/return profile of such projects. It comes to confirm reports that the firm is selling its 500-MW renewable energy portfolio in Australia.

“Wind and solar generation are increasingly mature and commoditised sectors and today they offer limited value creation potential for an investor such as John Laing,” the company said on Tuesday. It expects to sell its existing wind and solar assets over the next two years. There is strong demand from operational plants.

When it comes to the wider energy transition, John Laing believes it will be able to create better value for its shareholders by investing in technologies that enable a higher penetration of renewables, decarbonisation of other sectors such as transport, and greater energy efficiency. The investor is “actively reviewing” emerging opportunities in such fields. In line with such efforts, it has also joined the Hydrogen Council.

The table below contains John Laing’s results for 2019. The first said it delivered solid performance even as it faced challenges principally in the renewable energy portfolio.

Results in GBP million 2019 2018
Net asset value (NAV) 1,658 1,586
NVA per share in GBP 3.37 3.23
Profit before tax 100 296
Total investment portfolio 1,768 1,560
Investment pipeline 3,172 2,373

John Laing will remain active in waste-to-energy.

(GBP 1 = USD 1.28/EUR 1.15)

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Browse all articles from Tsvetomira Tsanova

Tsvet has been following the development of the global renewable energy industry for almost nine years. She's got a soft spot for emerging markets.

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