UK-based Rolls Royce Group announced that it has reached agreement with Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar, to invest £85 million ($112m) in Rolls-Royce SMR Limited. QIA will join Rolls-Royce Group, BNF Resources UK Ltd and Exelon Generation Ltd as shareholders in Rolls-Royce SMR, taking a 10% share of the equity.
QIA CEO Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, Chief Executive Officer of commented: “QIA is investing in the energy transition and funding the technologies that enable low carbon electricity generation. We will continue to seek out investments that align with our mandate to deliver long-term value for future generations through responsible sustainable investments.”
Warren East, CEO, Rolls-Royce Group, said: “I am tremendously pleased to announce that we have further strengthened our relationship with Qatar, through QIA’s investment in the Rolls-Royce SMR business. We have successfully raised the capital we need to establish Rolls-Royce SMR and it is encouraging to confirm that the business is now set up to succeed.”
Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “This investment is a clear vote of confidence in the UK’s global leadership in nuclear innovation and follows the £210 million of government investment in the development in Small Modular Reactors. It represents a huge step forward in our plan to deploy more home-grown, affordable clean energy — ensuring greater energy independence for the UK, highly skilled jobs and bringing cheaper, cleaner electricity to people’s homes.”
The Rolls-Royce SMR business is now fully funded, having secured £490 million through commercial equity and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) grant funding. The development of SMRs is a core part of the UK Government’s 10-point plan for a green industrial revolution.
Rolls-Royce SMR will draw upon standard nuclear energy technology. A Rolls-Royce said its SMR power station will have the capacity to generate 470MWe and will provide consistent baseload generation for at least 60 years, helping to support the roll out of renewable generation, helping to overcome intermittency.
Rolls-Royce was advised on the equity raise process by Eversheds Sutherland and HSBC. When fully operational the Rolls-Royce SMR business is forecast to create 40,000 regional UK jobs by 2050 and generate £52bn in economic benefit. Rolls-Royce Group will ultimately own approximately 70% of Rolls-Royce SMR business.
How a Rolls-Royce SMR might look (Photo credit: Rolls-Royce)