UK bidder still hopeful in Green Investment Bank bidding process after Macquarie slammed for asset-stripping plans

William Turvill
Follow William
Solar Power Industry In Spain
The government launched the Green Investment Bank in 2012 (Source: Getty)

The British bidder for the government’s Green Investment Bank (GIB) has retained hope of landing the asset as the preferred buyer’s offer comes under scrutiny.

Australian investment bank Macquarie has been the government’s preferred bidder for the privatisation since the autumn.

But, after it was reported over the weekend that Macquarie plans to strip the bank of its prized assets, the deal has come under scrutiny, with former Tory minister minister for energy and climate change Gregory Barker calling for the sale to be halted.

Read more: Branson laments total sale of Green Investment Bank

Sustainable Development Capital (SDC), which led a rival consortium bid for GIB, indicated today that it remains in the race and believes it can “deliver the best outcome for the privatisation process”.

SDC chief executive Jonathan Maxwell told City A.M.:

We remain eager and able to make the acquisition and a sale to us would better further the green agenda of the GIB, which the UK government pledged to uphold, while meeting the objectives of the privatisation, being value for money for the UK taxpayer, transaction certainty and continuity.

A spokesperson for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) said: “Any government decisions on the sale of the GIB will be driven by what best achieves our objectives, including continued investment in the green economy and a sale which is in the best interests of the taxpayer.”

Read more: Green Investment Bank takes another step towards £2bn privatisation

The SDC, whose consortium also includes the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), urged the government during the bidding process to keep the GIB in British hands.

Barker revealed on Sunday that he had written to the Prime Minister encouraging her to “rethink [the] sale of this big Conservative success story”.

Barker called for the BEIS to retain the GIB.