Sep 21, 2017

Foss and Co. launches new Renewable Energy Partners fund

Renewable Energy
Utilities
Jonathan Dyble
2 min
Energy investment
Foss and Company, an institutional investment management firm that has provided over $5bn in cash equity, has announced the launch of its new Foss Re...

Foss and Company, an institutional investment management firm that has provided over $5bn in cash equity, has announced the launch of its new Foss Renewable Energy Partners fund, moving into the renewable energy market for the first time.

With plans to deploy $300mn in renewable energy projects by the end of 2018, the platform is aimed at providing quick access to tax credits for investors and equity capital for developers in the renewable energy market.

“Currently, many renewable energy and solar developers are having a difficult time finding tax credit equity financing and many large corporations don’t understand the positive impact such investments can have on their tax liability, earnings and environmental sustainability,” said Stephen Tracy, a partner with Novogradac and Co. LLP, a firm that has worked with Foss and Co. for over 30 years.

“Through the creation of this renewable energy financing platform, Foss & Company is looking to provide an efficient source of equity capital for developers and ample investment opportunities for corporate investors.”

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Foss and Co.’s dedicated branch, Foss Renewable Energy Partners LLC will optimise the investment process for developers by organising the finance behind solar projects, both industrial and commercial, via its new platform, TaxEquity.com.

“The goal of Foss Renewable Energy Partners, LLC, and TaxEquity.com is to create an opportunity for institutional investors and large corporations to gain access to more quality renewable energy projects,” said George Barry, President, Foss & Company.

“As the asset manager, Foss Renewable Energy Partners underwrites the projects and takes them through the closing process in an efficient manner.”

“Most organizations don’t have the deep industry expertise to target, vet and structure such investments. Our new fund and TaxEquity.com solves this problem by allowing more investor capital to flow to quality energy projects.”

The move see’s Foss and Co. step outside its usual area of specialisation, largely having focused on affordable housing credit to date.

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Jul 26, 2021

Ofwat allows retailers to raise prices from April

Ofwat
Utilities
water
prices
Dominic Ellis
3 min
Ofwat confirms levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue

Retailers can recover a portion of excess bad debt by temporarily increasing prices from April 2022, according to an Ofwat statement.

The regulator confirmed its view that levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue, thereby allowing "a temporary increase" in the maximum prices. Adjustments to price caps will apply for a minimum of two years to reduce the step changes in price that customers might experience.

Measures introduced since March 2020 to contain the spread of Covid-19 could lead to retailers facing higher levels of customer bad debt. Retailers’ abilities to respond to this are expected to be constrained by Ofwat strengthening protections for non-household customers during Covid-19 and the presence of price caps.  

In April last year, Ofwat committed to provide additional regulatory protection if bad debt costs across the market exceeded 2% of non-household revenue. 

Georgina Mills, Business Retail Market Director at Ofwat said: “These decisions aim to protect the interests of non-household customers in the short and longer term, including from the risk of systemic Retailer failure as the business retail market continues to feel the impacts of COVID-19. By implementing market-wide adjustments to price caps, we aim to minimise any additional costs for customers in the shorter term by promoting efficiency and supporting competition.”  

There are also three areas where Ofwat has not reached definitive conclusions and is seeking further evidence and views from stakeholders:   

  1. Pooling excess bad debt costs – Ofwat proposes that the recovery of excess bad debt costs is pooled across all non-household customers, via a uniform uplift to price caps. 
  2. Keeping open the option of not pursuing a true up – For example if outturn bad debt costs are not materially higher than the 2% threshold. 
  3. Undertaking the true up – If a 'true up' is required, Ofwat has set out how it expects this to work in practice. 

Further consultation on the proposed adjustments to REC price caps can be expected by December.

Anita Dougall, CEO and Founding Partner at Sagacity, said Ofwat’s decision comes hot on the heels of Ofgem’s price cap rise in April.

"While it’s great that regulators are helping the industry deal with bad debt in the wake of the pandemic, raising prices only treats the symptoms. Instead, water companies should head upstream, using customer data to identify and rectify the causes of bad debt, stop it at source and help prevent it from occurring in the first place," she said.

"While recouping costs is a must, water companies shouldn’t just rely on the regulator. Data can help companies segment customers, identify and assist customers that are struggling financially, avoiding penalising the entire customer in tackling the cause of the issue."

United Utilities picks up pipeline award

A race-against-time plumbing job to connect four huge water pipes into the large Haweswater Aqueduct in Cumbria saw United Utilities awarded Utility Project of the Year by Pipeline Industries Guild.

The Hallbank project, near Kendal, was completed within a tight eight-day deadline, in a storm and during the second COVID lockdown last November – and with three hours to spare. Principal construction manager John Dawson said the project helped boost the resilience of water supplies across the North West.

“I think what made us stand out was the scale, the use of future technology and the fact that we were really just one team, working collaboratively for a common goal," he said.

Camus Energy secures $16m funding

Camus Energy, which provides advanced grid management technology, has secured $16 million in a Series A round, led by Park West Asset Management and joined by Congruent VenturesWave Capital and other investors, including an investor-owned utility. Camus will leverage the operating capital to expand its grid management software platform to meet growing demand from utilities across North America.

As local utilities look to save money and increase their use of clean energy by tapping into low-cost and low-carbon local resources, Camus' grid management platform provides connectivity between the utility's operations team, its grid-connected equipment and customer devices.

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