MPower Completes Acquisition of the Lakeland Renewable Project

MPower (MPR) says it has acquired the Lakeland Solar & Storage Project. The ASX-listed microgrid, renewable energy, and battery storage business has completed the acquisition of the leading large-scale solar and battery storage project in Queensland.

The Lakeland project, located in Cooktown Shire, North Queensland, comprises a 45-hectare 10.8megawatt alternating current (MWac) solar farm and a 1.4MWac/5.3MWh lithium-ion battery storage facility.

The Lakeland acquisition was first announced in May 2022. It is a deal backed by the commercial bank NORD/LB, which invests in worldwide wind and solar projects. NORD/LB is a German Landesbank owned by the German states of Lower Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. It is one of the leading financiers in the renewable sector with over 1000 projects (equivalent to 45GW) in Europe, America, and Asia Pacific. Relevant third-party consent has been sought towards finalizing the deal.

As an energy company, MPower is looking to expand its existing national footprint in New South Wales, Victoria, and South Australia to Queensland. 

MPower chief executive officer, Nathan Wise, said the purchase of the project aligns with the company’s portfolio. He said, ‘The acquisition of the Lakeland project is an exciting opportunity for MPower that accelerates and expands our BOO (build, own and operate) strategy. It provides us with an established, operating hybrid renewable energy asset that will increase the company’s revenues from day one. We intend to immediately deploy our expertise to upgrade the project and enhance its value.’

Lakeland Solar and Storage began operation in 2017. MPower purchased 100% of the shares after partnering with Kawa Australia Developments in a Share Purchase Agreement. The $8 million deal kicked off with a long-term Power Purchase Agreement(PPA) with Origin Energy until 2030. As a result, it started by testing different unique battery modes integrating solar sources for grid support. 

The transaction has a deferred consideration of up to $350,000 over three years on completion. With the assumption of a current $7.66 million debt, Lakeland will contribute about $800,000 in annual earnings before tax, interest, depreciation, and amortization.

The project has an approximate operation of 20 years. Within this period, MPower will utilize its in-house engineering team and capability to deliver immediate operational improvements. The complete acquisition calls for an upgrade to infrastructure and the implementation of proprietary solutions to monitor renewable energy projects. MPower will take control of operations, maintenance, and asset management of future projects.

The Lakeland project is an aspect of MPower’s plan to own and operate a broad portfolio of Australian renewable energy assets. The lithium-ion battery storage project further enhances MPower’s ability to own and manage assets in the expanding battery storage sector.

MPower will now be able to sell energy and large-scale generation certificates. The sales will generate annual revenues of $1.8 million, marking MPower’s first revenue generation from the exchange of clean energy.

MPower Group Limited (ASX: MPR), the Sydney-based energy company, has a history specializing in the delivery of resilient on-grid and off-grid power solutions for corporate and government customers. The group is made of professionals who deliver solar, battery storage, and microgrid projects across Australia.

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