BANGKOK, THAILAND (19 July 2017) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has subscribed to 123 million shares worth B1,968 million ($57.7 million) of an initial public offering of Thailand’s B. Grimm Power Public Company (B. Grimm) to develop renewable energy projects in Southeast Asia. The shares will begin trading on the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) on 19 July 2017 under the ticker symbol BGRIM. ADB will also administer a loan of up to $20 million from the Canadian Climate Fund under ADB’s Clean Energy Financing Partnership Facility.
B. Grimm, established in 1993 in Thailand, is one of the largest private power producers in the country with a total capacity of 1,626 megawatts (MW), operating 12 gas-fired plants, with 5 more under development or construction. In recent years, B. Grimm has diversified into renewable energy and is operating 15 solar power plants. Based on the success of these and strong potential for expansion within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, B. Grimm is planning to increase the shares of renewable energy generation of its portfolio from 10% to 30%.
“The project will help support B. Grimm in diversifying its energy production and expand to other less-developed countries,” said Jackie Surtani, a Director of ADB’s Private Sector Operations Department. “In doing so, the project will help the ASEAN region in its transition to a low-carbon economy through the development of renewable energy.”
ASEAN countries face a rapid rise in energy demand, fueled by factors such as high population growth, sustained economic growth, urbanization, and an expanding middle class. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, electricity consumption by ASEAN countries will grow more than 8% a year between 2009 and 2030.
ADB’s equity investment will be earmarked toward B. Grimm’s 114 MW solar projects and 16 MW wind power projects in Thailand as well as solar, wind, and other renewable energy projects in Cambodia, Indonesia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Viet Nam.
The administered loan from Canada will contribute to the diversification of ASEAN’s energy mix by adding renewable energy capacity, in particular, solar power. Under this, power generated from individual solar modules will be collected using battery storage and software, to be dispatched to thousands of homes and commercial buildings during peak demand hours. It will also help the company address various legal, technical, and regulatory challenge in some of the ASEAN countries.
ADB is also planning to provide later a corporate loan facility to B. Grimm to support its future expansion and development of gas-fired and renewable power projects in the ASEAN region.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB is celebrating 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2016, ADB assistance totaled $31.7 billion, including $14 billion in cofinancing.