Equinor has signed an agreement to buy 100% of US-based battery storage developer East Point Energy, marking its first play in the US power market.
The Norwegian state-backed energy giant said the deal would support its energy transition ambitions and would provide a platform to broaden its offerings in the US.
It said the addition of flexible battery storage would complement its existing US portfolio of offshore wind, upstream oil and gas and support new opportunities in hydrogen and carbon capture and storage (CCS).
Privately held East Point Energy is headquartered in Charlottesville, Virginia, and has a 4.1 GW pipeline of early to mid-stage battery storage projects along the country’s east coast.
Equinor said further “additional growth potential” beyond this 4.GW has also been identified.
Following completion of the deal – expected some time in Q3 2022 – East Point will become a subsidiary of Equinor, while its team continues to develop the business.
East Point CEO Andrew Foukal said: “On behalf of the East Point Energy team, I am excited to welcome Equinor as the new owner. We look forward to a long and successful relationship developing, owning and operating energy storage projects in the US.”
The energy major pointed to wider plans to build a profitable deploying battery storage in “selected power markets”, supported by the flexible nature of battery storage and by its trading capabilities via its wholly owned trading house, Danske Commodities.
Equinor said such projects would contribute to lifting returns from its overall renewables portfolio while at also lowering portfolio risk.
Olav Kolbeinstveit, senior vice president for power and markets within the company’s renewables unit said: “The acquisition of East Point Energy represents Equinor’s entry into the US power market through flexible assets. It will enable Equinor to further unlock the potential we see in the renewables space in the US, capturing value from volatility in the power markets and providing reliable services to the grid.”
It follows the company’s 2021 deal to take a 45% stake in UK-based battery storage developer Noriker Power, as well as other key acquisitions such as that of Polish clean energy developer Wento.