Aspirant reserve power supplier Mast hoists sail, prepares to plug in


Would-be grid backup supplier Mast Energy Developments, fresh from raising £23 million from last month’s successful flotation on the LSE, yesterday briefed investors on its UK projects either targeted and close to commission.

The debutant’s parent Kibo set up Mast to develop reserve power for clients, with the option to trade it across Britain’s rapidly greening grid.  Per its announcement three weeks ago, Kibo deals exclusively in renewables, but retains 55% of its technology-agnostic offshoot.

Mast already has access to UK sites totalling around 166MW, and is in talks with vendors and offering more, chair of both companies Louis Coetzee disclosed today.

Reserve power plants are designed to respond quickly and run for several hours. This flexibility commands a premium supply price over regular generation.

On the way to building a 300MW operating portfolio, Mast is developing three UK sites together capable of 33MW, and is in talks with developers of two more.  The latter have potential of 24.2MW, of which 4.4MW is already raising flex revenues.

Bordesley Power Ltd. This site, which was the first addition to the MED reserve power sites

For a site in Bordesley, central Birmingham, Mast has signed a 20-year extendable lease. 5MW is the site’s base case, with upwards potential of 19.12MW.  Gas reciprocating generation and storage is the intended technology.  The location shares infrastructure with two nearby sites, offering a further 9MW.  Full construction and EPC plans are due for confirmation within days.

Purchase of a second site of 9MW capacity is also imminent for signature, Mast tells investors. The location is grid-connected and operates gas reciprocating generators.   Acquisition will enable round-the-clock operation under load, yielding “instantaneous revenue” of £42,500 each month by fulfilling at least one power off-take contract.

Also in the Midlands, a third site is planning consented for development as a long duration battery storage site. Generation by gas reciprocators, or a mix of both technologies are also possible, said Mast.  The location is grid-connected to its DNO as well commercial offtake by private wire.  Commercial commissioning could come by March 2022, according to the operator.

Coetzee added: We are delighted with our progress …since announcing the successful IPO of Mast Energy Developments. We are, in particular, pleased that …all the projects identified in the company’s working capital budget, as stated in the Company Prospectus, can be delivered within the said budget.”

Two-thirds of Britain’s traditional power plants could close by 2030.  Mast bases its planning on estimates that up to 4,500MW of reserve capacity will need to be installed over the next few years.

Mast’s share price rose 5.66% by 16:30 yesterday on the news.


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