Former PM to chair fund planning 15 GW clean energy portfolio


HMC Capital announced that Julia Gillard has agreed to chair the ASX-listed investment and fund manager’s Energy Transition Fund (ETF) that will be launched in the coming months and seek to raise up to $2 billion to support the development of a 15 GW portfolio of renewable energy assets.

HMC, which has an estimated $10 billion under management, earlier this year announced its plan to establish the ETF to take advantage of what Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer David Di Pilla described as “one of the most significant investment opportunities of our generation.”

“We believe there is a substantial investment opportunity in energy transition which has not yet been properly defined for investors, let alone captured,” he said.

Sydney-headquartered HMC has identified the energy transition as one of the fastest growing sectors in the global private markets landscape, estimating it will offer more than $415 trillion (USD 275 trillion) in investment opportunities globally over the next 30 years.

Di Pilla said the ETF will focus on investing in a portfolio of assets across the energy value chain, including solar and wind generation, battery energy storage, biofuels and emerging technologies.

HMC said it is already in due diligence across a number of investment opportunities that will form the basis of a seed portfolio of assets. Fund raising is to commence in the second half of the year with the firm seeking to raise up to $2 billion from institutional and wholesale investors.

Former Australian prime minister Julia Gillard.

Image: Julia Gillard

Di Pilla said Gillard’s global standing and experience will be invaluable to HMC as it prepares to establish the fund.

“She brings deep insights, policy experience and relationships which will be invaluable to HMC as we launch and then grow the Energy Transition Fund,” he said.

Gillard, who oversaw the creation of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency during her term as prime minister, said the ETF is positioned to be “a genuine driver of Australia’s transition” to zero net emissions by 2050.

“It is in our nation’s interests to better harness our abundant opportunities in solar, wind and other renewable sources of energy,” she said. “In addition, our nation has made commitments to the world on combating climate change, which we need to honour.”

“To create a clean energy future we must urgently unlock the full potential of private investment and business acumen. As prime minister, I devoted a great deal of my and my government’s energy into fighting climate change and this new role is a continuation of that commitment.”

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