A European financing project has mobilised over €1 billion of private capital from investors seeking energy efficiency projects that deliver environmental and financial results.
The Investor Confidence Project Europe (ICP Europe) has launched an Investor Network to bring together energy efficiency financiers with property developers seeking finance for their projects. It was developed to help address the needs of investors looking for standardised projects that reduce the time, risk, and costs involved in funding energy efficiency building retrofits.
Panama Bartholomy, director of ICP Europe, said: “The potential market for building retrofits in Europe is worth upwards of €100 billion per year, presenting a massive, untapped investment opportunity. Offering investors a common language to compare risks and savings makes projects simpler, decisions easier, and project performance more reliable.
“We invite cities, building owners, and local governments that develop these types of projects to meet with our Investor Network to help finance them.”
Funded by, ICP Europe works to standardise energy efficiency upgrades and make them more attractive to both investors and building owners. Its Investor Ready Energy Efficiency (IREE) certified projects are accredited against industry standards and best practices which ICP Europe says reduces transaction costs and increase confidence in savings.
The organisation, which is funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme, says the network comprises a wide range of energy efficiency investors who “recognise the value of standardised, investor-ready projects to increase deal flow and drive demand in the marketplace”.
Some of the financiers involved in the project offer additional benefits to developers including accelerated underwriting, reduced transaction fees, and preferable terms for certified projects.
Ben Goldsmith, chief executive of Menhaden Capital Management – one of the charter members of the network – said: “The key obstacle that stands in the way of investors allocating capital to energy efficiency projects is the lack of any kind of standardisation. The ICP Europe Investor Network is a key step towards turning such projects into an investible asset class.”
Among the invetsors in the project is The Royal Bank of Scotland, which recently revealed that it doubled its lending for sustainable energy projects last year to £1 billion.
ICP Europe also works through an Ally Network and Steering Group to develop energy performance protocols further while maintaining the current level. It also works to make energy efficiency projects more market-ready and investor-friendly.