What was once considered little more than a pipe dream is now one step closer to reality. The $30bn Australia-Asia PowerLink, a giant solar project that is expected to power Darwin, Indonesia and Singapore via an undersea cable, has received a $210m funding boost courtesy of billionaires Mike Cannon-Brookes and Andrew Forrest.
Two of Australia’s richest men, Cannon-Brookes and Forrest led the capital raising via their respective investments groups, Grok Ventures and Squadron Energy. The funding will go towards accelerating the progress of the Australia-Asia PowerLink, as well as other projects in Sun Cable Pty Ltd’s portfolio.
To date, $250m capital has been raised to build the 17-gigawatt solar plant on a cattle property at Newcastle Waters. The site will host a 12,000 hectare solar precinct with 17-20 GW solar generation and 36-42 GWh energy storage to enable 24/7 dispatchable electricity near Elliott, in the Northern Territory.
“One step closer” to realising Australia’s renewables exporting potential
Sun Cable’s chief executive, David Griffin, shared that he was “really stoked” to close the funding round. “It’s a really significant number and puts us in a really strong position.”
“The funding “will take us all the way through to the financial close of the Australia-Asia PowerLink”, Griffin said.
“It will also allow us to accelerate development of our broader portfolio,” he said. “Our mission is to supply renewable electricity from resource-abundant regions to growing load centres at scale.”
Cannon-Brookes agreed, claiming the funding brought Australia “one step closer to realising our renewables exporting potential” while paving the way for future projects. “We can power the world with clean energy and Sun Cable is harnessing that at scale.”
Forrest also shared his enthusiasm for Sun Cable’s vision, saying that it will not only set up Australia as a renewable energy powerhouse but also enable decarbonisation.
“I’m proud to be a cornerstone investor in Sun Cable, its team and its vision”.
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