UK Infrastructure Bank backs storage innovator Invinity to boost longer-duration energy storage in the UK

UK Infrastructure Bank backs storage innovator Invinity to boost longer-duration energy storage in the UK

2 May 2024

The UK Infrastructure Bank has today announced a £25 million direct equity investment into Invinity Energy Systems plc, a leading manufacturer of vanadium flow batteries, to support the commercial development of longer-duration energy storage from their base in Bathgate, Scotland. 

The Bank’s financing forms the cornerstone of a £56 million fundraise with UKIB’s investment accelerating the deployment of Invinity’s existing and next generation vanadium flow battery products onto the UK grid. Durable and easy to deploy at scale, Invinity’s batteries have lower levels of degradation compared to other storage technologies and do not suffer from thermal runaway making them well suited to a broad range of grid-scale battery applications.

In line with the Bank’s regional growth mandate, the investment will support the expansion of Invinity’s footprint in Scotland, boosting manufacturing in the nation and unlocking opportunities for skilled jobs. The proposed opening of a new manufacturing site in Scotland in addition to its existing facility in Bathgate will create up to 41 new jobs in the region.

Integrating longer-duration energy storage onto the grid is vital to supporting the UK’s net zero transition as the country adopts more variable energy sources like wind and solar and continues the rapid electrification of its transport and heat networks. Vanadium flow batteries are one the most promising proven technologies for longer-duration battery storage between 4-12hrs. Invinity’s batteries are ideally suited to manage energy supply and demand volatility with a number of advantages over more well-established lithium-ion batteries.

Invinity’s fundraise, including UKIB’s investment, is subject to the approval of the Company’s shareholders at a general meeting to be held later this month.

John Flint, CEO of UK Infrastructure Bank, said:  

“Electricity storage technologies have a crucial role to play in balancing the energy system in response to volatility in supply and demand as the UK transitions to net zero. However, the market of investors in more nascent longer-duration technologies like vanadium flow has developed more slowly than for lithium-ion batteries. Our cornerstone investment has helped Invinity to mobilise the additional private investment needed to scale their manufacturing, supporting the development of a promising new longer-duration technology.”

Larry Zulch, CEO at Invinity Energy Systems, said: 

“We believe that long duration energy storage has an essential role to play in the global transition to a sustainable electricity system. This investment provides Invinity with the opportunity to scale up to help meet the significant global demand for batteries with the characteristics that make our vanadium flow battery unique: high performance, long asset life, compelling total ownership economics, and no propensity to catch fire. We are grateful for the support of the UK Infrastructure Bank as we demonstrate the viability of LDES in the UK with battery systems produced in the UK. We’re also grateful for the support of existing investors who enabled us to advance Mistral, our next-generation battery, to near completion, and for the support of new investors, such as Korea Investment Partners, who have embraced our vision of profitably meeting global demand for LDES.”

This deal marks the Bank’s third direct investment in the battery storage market following its £60 million loan to support Pacific Green in November and a £62.5 million commitment to Pulse Clean Energy in May 2023. This is in addition to £200 million commitment into the Equitix UK Electricity Storage Fund and Gresham House Secure Income Renewable Energy & Storage LP (SIRES).

Notes to editors

  • Currently, National Grid forecasts show that up to 29 GW of total storage could be needed by 2030 and up to 51 GW by 2050. This is a huge increase on the 6 GW approx. currently available and means there is a clear need to accelerate deployment of capital and investment in new storage projects.
  • The Bank’s investment follows the Government consultation on a specific support mechanism for longer duration storage technologies. The Bank welcomes this and will continue to explore how it can support investment into projects ahead of its introduction. 
  • For more information on the UK Infrastructure Bank, please contact Catherine Leonard and Archie Hart at: press@ukib.org.uk 
  • For more information on Invinity Energy Systems, please contact Joe Worthington at: jworthington@invinity.com