APG has acquired a share in solar energy provider enie.nl. The investment is part of ABP’s Netherlands Energy Transition Fund (ANET). Jeroen Schreur, responsible for ANET at APG, explains the importance of the investment. “We share enie.nl’s ambition to continue to grow the company and thus make a significant contribution to the energy transition.”
The high energy prices have led to a greater demand for solar panels, Schreur says. “People now feel the urgency even more than before, so there is more interest in solar panels but also, for example, in heat networks, in order to get rid of natural gas. The war in Ukraine and Russia’s energy dependence once again emphasize the importance of the energy transition and the ANET mandate. Of course, we would have preferred that people had been convinced of the need for the energy transition by all the scientific findings on climate change and the news about hurricanes and floods and other impacts of climate change. But in general, it seems like people only take action when it hits them directly in the wallet. That’s understandable, too. The important thing is that at least now people feel even more urgency about the energy transition.”
What makes enie.nl so suitable to invest in?
“What makes them good compared to their competitors is their client journey. They have made sure that on enie.nl potential customers can arrange the whole process quite easily, from the purchase of a solar panel to the installation. The company has already achieved good results with this.”
What does the investment look like?
“We are financing the growth of enie.nl. They want to scale up further, and with sufficient capital there is room to enlarge the sales department, for example. The company is based in the north of the country. They have name recognition there, but they want to spread their wings to the rest of the Netherlands, so they can sell and install more solar panels. And if they continue to grow and another capital injection is needed, then we are certainly willing to look into that.”
APG has considerable knowledge and a large network. In what ways can that contribute to enie.nl’s success?
“We are a financial investor, so we basically have no technical knowledge of solar panels. What we do have is a huge network and a large portfolio. For example, APG can contribute to the name recognition of enie.nl. Through our real estate portfolio we have good connections with housing associations, for example. There is an opportunity there to install solar panels. But we also have a lot of real estate outside the Netherlands whose roofs could be covered with solar panels. Our aim is ultimately to contribute to the energy transition as well as to a good pension for the participant. If we manage to create a win-win situation, we will have achieved our goal.”