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Net Zero Infrastructure lists as London cash shell to target zero carbon industry


Net Zero Infrastructure (LSE:NZI) lists in London today following a successful placing of 50m ordinary shares, which raised £1.5m. On admission, the cash shell will have 60.7m shares in issue. The company is targeting one or more acquisitions in the renewable and clean energy technology sector.

The cash shell is targeting companies in areas that can support the storage and distribution of power generated from alternative sources. While the UK is a global leader in zero carbon power generation, it still needs to further develop the power infrastructure to support this. Net Zero Infrastructure will seek to acquire companies in the range of £5, to £50m market value in the sector.

Timely launch for a net zero cash shell

The launch looks very timely, coming as it does just ahead of the upcoming COP 26 Climate Change conference in Glasgow. The UK is already heavily committed to carbon emissions reduction targets, with legislation already on the books to cut emissions to net zero by 2050. The country also wants to slash emissions by 78% by 2035. It is an ambitious target that will require plenty of private sector support.

According to the company’s directors, the initial focus will be on making acquisitions in the UK, but there is also scope to look at opportunities further afield. At this stage Net Zero Infrastructure cannot confirm just how many companies it will be targeting. What we do know is that the sectors it will be looking at include energy parks and hubs, battery storage specialists, hydrogen fuel production and carbon emissions reduction or mitigation companies.

Listen: Podcast with Mike Ellwood, Chairman of Net Zero Infrastructure

The team behind Net Zero Infrastructure

The team behind Net Zero is being led by former senior Santander banker Mike Ellwood. Also on the board in a non-executive capacity is Alejandro Ciruelos, Managing Director for Energy and Infrastructure at Sustainable Development Capital.

The company will be shopping in a strategically important area of the UK economy, which is going to be given a lot of attention by the UK and European governments over the next few years. It is therefore also reassuring to see James Wharton (Baron Wharton of Yarm) on the board, a former Member of Parliament and now a UK peer. Wharton was Northern Powerhouse Minister at the Department for Communities and Local Government and will bring valuable perspective on the evolving political climate for this market.

Also on the board is Brian Basham, a former newspaper journalist, fund manager, entrepreneur and advisor to larger companies, including FTSE names like British Airways, Tesco and BAe Systems. Basham has founded a number of successful companies, including Broad Street Group, Primrose Care, Equity Development and ArchOver.

A cash shell is a cash only company that lists on a stock exchange to make acquisitions in a specific private company sector. It can facilitate the listing of previously private companies on an exchange without the costs and time involved in a traditional IPO process. Also known as a SPAC (Special Purpose Acquisition Company), cash shells have been very popular on Wall Street recently, but they are harder to list in the UK, and consequently rarer.

Alexander David Securities acted as the corporate adviser and Axis Capital Markets as the placing agent and broker.

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This article does not constitute investment advice. Do your own research or consult a professional advisor.

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