A pivotal play?

On the 4 November, EDF Renewables UK agreed to acquire Pivot Power. Pivot Power is a UK start-up which aims to build 50MW batteries connected to the Transmission Network and provide rapid Electric Vehicle (EV) charging nearby.

The firm announced plans in 2018 to develop up to 2GW of batteries connected directly to the transmission system. The move would require investment of up to £1.6bn and Pivot Power looked to secure this from investors and specifically through crowdfunding.

Two to tango

The Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC) register currently shows that Pivot Power have just shy of 1.8GW of battery storage projects in the process of scoping, awaiting consents or consents approved. As of 31 October 2019 Pivot Power has 67% of the battery storage capacity in the TEC register across 36 sites.

The investment is important for both parties in very different ways, given recent developments and future plans. For Pivot Power, they have the connections agreed to the transmission network in which they negotiated ahead of many other parties in the market with National Grid. However, they lacked the capital to develop the projects and meet the increasing and ongoing collateral requirements for the connections they have secured.

Teaming up with EDF Renewables UK will give Pivot Power access to a large business customer base and provide the opportunity to interact with customers closer to planned deployment sites. It could also offer the opportunity for partners to provide a combined energy supply and EV charging opportunities to businesses willing to relocate, such as distribution centres, closer to connection points.

The Waltz

The potential opportunity for EDF Renewables UK and its generation business will be a growth area and help offset the reduction in its thermal generation capacity. The closure of Cottam Power station and uncertainty around the proposed Sutton Bridge B mean the generation portfolio is limited to West Burton A (1,975MW coal) and West Burton B (1,333MW CCGT), West Burton C (299MW OCGT) and Enhanced Frequency Response 49MW battery on the site of West Burton B.

The Pivot Power planned portfolio is a step change from EDF Renewables UK’s current generation fleet and provides a different approach to the traditional business by focusing on providing stability, flexibility and vehicle charging to the market. This development reduces the reliance on the wholesale market, while allowing it to maintain its dominant position in the generation market. These new assets will also be able to provide shape, flexibility and reliability which is not available from its nuclear generation portfolio by meeting its customer’s needs.


EDF Renewables UK also could integrate storage solutions into its existing and growing renewable fleet, potentially co-locating or providing baseload solutions to corporates through a combination of wind and storage. Alternatively, it could allow the business to capture flexibility revenues or mitigate imbalance exposure.


Pivot Power fits in well with EDF Renewable North America’s acquisition of electric vehicle technology company PowerFlex System given the desire by Pivot Power to develop rapid EV charging. The investment is expected not to alter the day to day running of the business, with EDF recently acquiring several organisations and letting them run separately to the core business.

The key challenges will be around flexibility revenues, electric vehicle roll out and getting customers to locate close to valuable connection point to extract the full value.

Related thinking

E-mobility and low carbon

Ending the ICE age: EV Country Attractiveness Index Findings

Over the past decade, electric vehicles (EVs) have become increasingly popular across many of the world’s major economies, with both the eco-conscious and average consumer adding to the rise in sales. This phenomenon has not just appeared from thin air, however, as international climate agreements, national net zero plans, EV...

E-mobility and low carbon

2022’s most exciting ‘Charts of the Week’

Some of our team have looked back throughout 2022 and picked their most exciting ‘Chart of the Week’.​Their choices include exploring green tariffs, wholesale gas prices, CfD allocation round 4 and the MHHS Implementation Levy.  It’s My Birthday – Two years of Dynamic Containment Picked by Tom Faulkner, Head of...

Commercial and market outlook

Capacity, reform, and unlawful strategies: 5 things that happened yesterday

Capacity, reform, and unlawful strategies: yesterday was a busy day for energy geekery. The developments encapsulate the shorter and longer term challenges and uncertainties present in the energy market presently: Read the full article here

E-mobility and low carbon

Another one bites the dust: Plug-in car grant ends

Last week the government announced the plug-in car grant scheme for electric vehicles (EVs) closed, having previously confirmed funding until 2022-23. Why? Well, the government stated it would allow it to concentrate funding towards what it called the main barriers to the EV transition, including public charging and supporting the...

E-mobility and low carbon

Expanded guidance provides more clarity on electricity supply to EVs

In a burgeoning EV-centric world, Ofgem’s updated guidance on supplying electricity to electric vehicles (EV) should provide clarity for many organisations around the supply arrangements in place for different charging scenarios. Due to their mobile nature, EVs don’t fit in with the legislative model that defines an electricity consumer by...

Energy storage and flexibility

Unlocking routes to market

On 19 January 2022, a webinar hosted by Cornwall Insight in partnership with the law firm Weightmans focused on routes to market for renewable projects that may not secure a contract during the fourth allocation round of the 'Contracts for Difference' (CfD) auction, which opened in December 2021. In the...

Energy storage and flexibility

Emerging utility business models

This article is from our latest Energy Spectrum and the January 2022 issue of EEnergy Informer, a newsletter edited by Fereidoon Sioshansi of Menlo Energy Economics and editor of Variable Generation, Flexible Demand. As numerous prior articles have pointed out, the traditional utility business model seems to be on its...

Commercial and market outlook

2021’s most exciting ‘Charts of the week’

Some of our team have looked back throughout 2021 and picked their most exciting 'Chart of the week'. Read about their choices and click through to read the full 'Chart of the week'. To do so, you need a free Cornwall Insight account which is easy to create here. Green...