Railpen secures 50% shareholding in leading renewable energy business, AGR Power

Railpen, one of the largest pension managers in the UK and responsible for managing £34 billion of assets on behalf of over 350,000 members, has acquired a 50% shareholding in AGR Power (AGR), a leading London-based renewable energy and sustainable infrastructure developer.

17 June 2024

The partnership marks a significant milestone for both Railpen and AGR, who will work collaboratively to grow AGR’s existing presence in the UK renewable and infrastructure market while exploring new territories, and building technologies that will expand AGR’s existing 2.5GW development pipeline.

AGR is one of the leading sustainable infrastructure developers in the UK, having delivered more than 55 projects totalling over 1.1GW of renewable power to support the UK’s energy transition and food security. Railpen’s investment in AGR will facilitate the business in constructing a portfolio of assets and achieving its target of putting over 500MW of high-quality renewable assets in operation by 2029.

As part of the partnership, Railpen has committed to invest in AGR’s near-term UK solar, Battery Energy Storage System (BESS), and greenhouse projects. This investment will facilitate the construction of 160MWp of solar photovoltaics (PV), 150MW of BESS, and AGR’s second sustainable greenhouse in 2024/25. Previously, AGR developed one of UK’s largest and most technologically advanced sustainable greenhouse projects, Fenland Greenhouse in Cambridgeshire, which currently spans over 22 hectares and produces over 2.5 million vegetables a week.

For Railpen, the investment in AGR reflects its continued commitment to investing in essential infrastructure, with over £500m invested into UK energy infrastructure projects since 2019 including wind, solar, biomass and energy storage. Railpen will be represented on AGR’s board by Lewis Vanstone and Cristiana Dochioiu. AGR’s co-founder Oliver Breidt will remain at the helm as group director.

Oliver Breidt, co-founder, AGR, said: “I’m incredibly pleased to announce our partnership with Railpen in what is a landmark move for AGR. Railpen’s investment and reputation will help propel AGR into new territories and technologies, including our 1GW pipeline in Italy, and see us expanding our presence in Germany and into further agricultural assets.

“I’m very pleased to be working with Lewis and Cristiana who bring with them a wealth of experience. This will be a transformative chapter for AGR and our mission.”

Cristiana Dochioiu, Investment Manager, Railpen, added: “We’re delighted to complete this investment in AGR, as part of our commitment to investing in innovative assets that grow our members’ capital over the long term. AGR’s approach to sustainable infrastructure development and investment matches Railpen’s ethos for sustainability and providing essential infrastructure to the UK.

“We are excited to work with the AGR team and Oliver to further develop the pipeline at AGR and drive positive change through our investment portfolio, building the critical infrastructure needed to support the UK’s transition to net zero. Railpen’s scale and long-term approach makes us an ideal partner for AGR’s ambitions to enhance energy and food security in the UK and Europe.”

Railpen were advised by CMS (legal), Grant Thornton (financial and tax), JLL (commercial), HWF (insurance) and Willis Towers Watson (insurance). AGR were advised by Eversheds Sutherland (legal).