Advanced Microgrid Solutions Gets $200M From Macquarie to Finance Aggregated Energy Storage

Greentech Media
By Eric Wesoff
July 11, 2016

Aggre­ga­tion could be the killer app for storage.

Susan Kennedy, CEO of Advanced Micro­grid Solu­tions, has observed, “The entire elec­tri­cal dis­tri­b­u­tion sys­tem is designed around a sin­gle premise: You can­not store energy.”

The premise of her com­pany: “Equip­ping a build­ing with the tech­nol­ogy to store and man­age its own elec­tric­ity turns that build­ing into a stand­alone stor­age unit,” and if you “com­bine a dozen build­ings into a fleet, you have the util­ity equiv­a­lent of a peaker plant.” She told GTM recently, “We’re offer­ing util­i­ties a cus­tomized solu­tion using energy stor­age behind the customer’s meter, har­ness­ing that load to pro­vide specif­i­cally what the util­ity needs in a par­tic­u­lar region. It’s a clean, fast, flex­i­ble prod­uct that doesn’t exist in the util­ity world today.”

And when main­stream infra­struc­ture investor Mac­quarie Group declares its aim to put $200 mil­lion into a fleet of bat­tery projects from Advanced Micro­grid Solu­tions — it’s a good sign.

AMS’ focus on con­tracted, grid-​​scale energy stor­age projects stands out amongst devel­op­ers forg­ing a path in energy stor­age space,” said Rob Kupchak, head of U.S. power, util­i­ties and renew­ables for Mac­quarie Capital.

Mac­quarie Cap­i­tal is the gold stan­dard for invest­ment in crit­i­cal infra­struc­ture,” said Kelly Warner, pres­i­dent of AMS, in a statement.

Mac­quarie will pro­vide project cap­i­tal that will be used to build and oper­ate a fleet of AMS’ dis­trib­uted energy stor­age projects located at host sites. The sys­tems will be used for “util­ity grid ser­vices includ­ing flex­i­ble and reserve capac­ity, solar inte­gra­tion and volt­age man­age­ment, in addi­tion to retail energy ser­vices such as demand man­age­ment, backup gen­er­a­tion and enhanced power quality.”

The cap­i­tal will address AMS’ projects such as:

  • The 50-​​megawatt con­tract from South­ern Cal­i­for­nia Edi­son to pro­vide behind-​​the-​​meter bat­tery stor­age in the West­ern Los Ange­les Basin area
  • Cal­i­for­nia real estate firm Irvine Company’s energy stor­age deploy­ment across 24 office build­ings equipped with Tesla Pow­er­packs and AMS’ soft­ware. The bat­ter­ies are intended to “shave peak energy while also pro­vid­ing South­ern Cal­i­for­nia Edi­son with up to 10 megawatts of capacity.”
  • A num­ber of other projects with Opus One Solu­tions, Sky­scraper One Mar­itime Plaza, Cal­i­for­nia State Uni­ver­sity, Shell Energy North Amer­ica and the Inland Empire Util­i­ties Agency.

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