Downing Crowd Offers £3.95 Million Investment in Biogas Renewable Energy Plant

Crowdfunding platform Downing Crowd has listed a £3.95 million offer for Warren Energy, a Norfolk-based renewable energy plant generating biogas.

Julia Groves, Downing’s Head of Crowdfunding, said there is a lack of awareness regarding different types of crowdfunding. Crowd Bonds may be a lower risk investment.

“… not only are Crowd Bonds uncorrelated to main markets, the returns on offer are clearly attractive compared to meagre interest rates on cash savings, provided of course investors are willing to take on an element of additional risk. There is also the opportunity to earn interest on Crowd Bonds tax free through the recently launched Innovative Finance ISA, and help everyday investors make a decent return on their money. We are immensely proud of our involvement with the renewable energy sector and we are confident that this latest project with Warren Energy will go on to deliver an important contribution to the small-scale renewable energy sector for years to come.”

Anaerobic Digestion or “AD” is a process that creates biogas, a methane-rich gas that can be used as both fuel and fertiliser. It works by using micro-organisms to break down organic materials, without the requirements of oxygen. Warren Energy receives payment for exporting this ‘biomethane’ gas to the grid as well as generating income for biogas and the electricity generated that goes back into the grid.

The Warren Energy plant became operational in March 2016 and is operated by Future Biogas Limited, an experienced operator with a further eight plants in the UK, five of which have been listed by Downing LLP.

The funds being raised by Crowd Bond investors will support the ongoing operation of the plant, with the value of the plant itself estimated at £12.9 million as at September 2017. By 31 May 2017 it had already produced 3,576 MWH of electricity and over 46,000m³ of bio-methane, generating £935,000 of operating income.

The asset-backed Crowd Bond offers investors the opportunity to earn 6.75% over the term of the bond, which will mature no later than 28 September 2019. According to Downing Crowd, £5.25 million worth of debt funding will also be supplied by other Downing-managed funds alongside this £3.95 million Crowd Bond. Downing is investing alongside institutional investors.

Downing Crowd is part of Downing LLP, an FCA authorised and regulated investment manager with over 20 years of experience, 35,000 investors and in excess of £950 million of funds under management.


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