The Climate Change and Industry Minister, Claire Perry, confirmed today (18 August 2017) that the sale of the Green Investment Bank (GIB) to Macquarie Group Limited has now been completed.
The £2.3 billion deal ensures that all the taxpayer funding invested in GIB since its creation, including set-up costs, has been returned with a gain of approximately £186 million.
As well as fully meeting the government’s objectives, the deal secures the future of the GIB with an ambitious new owner committed to growing the business. The Edinburgh office will be home to a new revenue-generating business as well as providing services to the green energy portfolios of both Macquarie and GIB in the UK.
The government decided that moving it into the private sector now would free it from the constraints of public sector ownership allowing it to increase investment in our green infrastructure as we transition to a green economy. GIB’s independent Board supported the government’s decision to sell the business to Macquarie.
In order to build on the company’s success within the private sector, Macquarie and GIB have announced today that the company will now be known as the Green Investment Group (GIG) so that it will be able to make overseas investments.
Climate Change and Industry Minister Claire Perry said:
We led the world in setting up the Green Investment Bank and it is now being copied by others. Now that it’s in the private sector, it will be able to operate on an international level to tackle the global challenge of climate change. It is also perfectly placed to help us finance green initiatives for our Clean Growth Plan and realise the commitments set out in the Paris Agreement.
The green ‘special share’ held by the Green Purposes Company Limited also comes into force now. Five independent trustees have the power to approve or reject any proposed changes to GIG’s green purposes in the future.
The government will continue to hold an interest in a portfolio of a small number of GIB’s existing green infrastructure investments. These assets will continue to be managed by GIB until they can be sold on in a way which returns best value for taxpayers’ money.
The sale of the Green Investment Group (formerly Green Investment Bank) was announced in April 2017. It was secured through a competitive process and met the objectives outlined when it launched the sales process last year. As well as securing value for money for the taxpayer and freeing GIG from the constraints of public sector ownership, it will enable GIG to grow its support for green projects.
The sale proceeds of £1.75 billion, which has now been received, sees all taxpayer funding invested in GIG returned with a gain of around £186 million. This, together with over £500 million of current outstanding commitments which will now be met by Macquarie and its partners rather than taxpayers, means that the transaction value is around £2.3 billion.
The government has now repealed the relevant provisions of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013, removing statutory controls over GIG’s green purposes to ensure that GIG can be re-classified to the private sector.
The government will provide a report to Parliament on the sale, as required under the Enterprise Act 2016 in the Autumn.