Superfund commits $1 billion to developer involved in green data centres

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One of Australia’s major super funds, Rest, will put $1 billion into Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners, which is pursuing a number of renewable energy projects across the globe. Rest’s Chief Investment Officer, Andrew Lill, says the company is aiming to provide strong long-term financial returns to its members via next-generation infrastructure in Australia and beyond.

Specifically, Rest is looking to “provide exposure” to assets like as solar and battery projects and green data storage centres, including Quinbrook’s Supernode green data campus in Brisbane – believed to be the largest in the southern hemisphere.

“In a world increasingly reliant on data, and through the global growth in cloud-based technologies and AI, data centres have become big business and demand for this critical infrastructure is expected to accelerate,” Lill said. “Repositories for the storage, management and dissemination of data require significant investments and huge amounts of energy.”

“Maximising their energy efficiency and minimising their environmental impact through our commitment to Quinbrook is just one way we believe we can contribute to strong long-term financial benefits for Rest members, while supporting our objective to achieve a net zero carbon footprint for the fund by 2050,” the Chief Investment Officer added.

Superannuation funds have emerged as some of the strongest investment vehicles for accelerating – or decelerating – the energy transition. In separate news, Origin shareholders have now cast their votes to decide on the company’s acquisition by Canadian giant Brookfield. 

Origin will hold a meeting on Thursday November 23 revealing its future. The acquisition has been loudly opposed by superfund and shareholder AustralianSuper, which has reportedly upped its stake in Origin to 17.5% over the last weeks in its campaign to block the deal. Brookfield’s takeover has hinged on a promise to invest more than $20 billion into transitioning Origin’s fleet to renewables.

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