Airswift and EPI Group target renewables with joint venture
Global workforce solutions provider Airswift has formed a joint venture with EPI Group, with a view to creating "a formidable portfolio" of renewable energy services within the APAC region.
Building on a six-year partnership, the collaboration will offer a combination of end-to-end services across the project lifecycle.
Airswift will provide managed services expertise, recruitment and mobilization of multi-discipline teams, complemented by EPI Group’s specialist technical and environmental capabilities across project development, construction and monitoring, to ensure successful operations for developers in offshore wind, solar and geothermal.
Airswift signed a JV with Taiwan-based HR and payroll software solution provider Take5People in December, and Maxime Degaldi was appointed in the newly created role of China Country Manager last summer, as it continues to bolster its regional profile.
"We’re already seeing a lot of movement in the region, for example the growth of offshore wind in Vietnam and Taiwan," said Charles Pfauwadel, VP Asia at Airswift. "Our partnership enables us to provide a greater range of services across APAC, allowing companies to navigate different jurisdictions and regulations easily."
Ben Dyton, VP Asia-Pacific at EPI Group said the tie-up with Airswift - which was ranked 48th in the list of the world's largest staffing firms in December - strengthens its existing range of services.
"With over 20 operational locations across the APAC region alone, Airswift’s truly global approach and reach is unparalleled," adding that the joint venture is a perfect fit which will bring client benefits.
EPI Group has several local employees focused on the joint venture who will be based out of Airswift’s Kuala Lumpur office.
With the energy transition accelerating, APAC is looking to generate over half of the world’s electricity by 2030 - and the renewables charge is in full flow.
South Korea's SK Group will invest $1.5bn for 9.9 percent stake in US hydrogen fuel cell group Plug Power, and Total Carbon Neutrality Ventures recently announced its investment in Canopy Power, a Singapore-based company specializing in renewable microgrids.
A PwC report stated the APAC region is expected to see up to $250 billion in new renewable investments in the lead up to 2025, spearheaded by China, India and Japan.
Lightsource bp’s first Spanish project powers up in Zaragoza
Lightsource bp has powered up its 247MW flagship solar project Vendimia in Zaragoza, Spain.
Around 615,000 bifacial solar panels have been installed, over 650 hectares of land on multi-row tracker technology enabling the panels to follow the sun, maximising energy generation efficiency. In addition, two overhead transmission lines at 18km and 20km were constructed to efficiently deliver the solar power into the local network.
The five-project cluster was constructed safely during the COVID-19 pandemic and commercial operation recently began. The total power output will be supplied to bp’s European power trading team under a long-term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).
Fernando Roger, Country Head for Lightsource bp Spain, said the connection of its Vendimia project demonstrates the resilience of solar. "We had to face many challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but our team and trusted partners remained focussed, and now we have completed our first project in Spain. We would also like to extend a special thank you to all the landowners involved for their continued support on this project.
Felipe Arbelaez, senior vice president for zero carbon energy bp said: “It’s fantastic to see the safe start-up of this first project in Spain, and for Lightsource bp to achieve an impressive 3GW pipeline in just two years. Through disciplined investment and safe execution, we are delighted to see the next chapter of bp’s energy story in Spain come online. This project is also a great example of the power of bp’s integration capabilities as our expert power trading team will offtake the power generated, supporting the financial stability of the project and meeting bp’s strict returns threshold.”
The construction process was handled by Lightsource bp’s appointed contractor, Prodiel (an Andalusian engineering, procurement and construction company) and over 600 local jobs were created during that time. Prodiel will continue to maintain the solar cluster under an Operations & Maintenance agreement for the next two years.
At the opening ceremony, Carlos Barassa, head of country for bp Spain, said: "The Vendimia solar project that we are inaugurating today in Zaragoza is great example of the fulfillment of bp's ambition in its transition to an integrated energy company, and our contribution to building a low-carbon future."
bp will pay 7X Energy $220 million for the projects and 1GW of 'safe harbour' equipment and expects the acquisition to complete in 30 days. The projects, spread across 12 states - with the largest portfolios in Texas (ERCOT) and MidWest (PJM) - are expected to meet bp’s low carbon investment criteria, generating returns of at least 8-10%.