The Electron Conundrum: An Investment Primer on Battery Electric Storage Systems

20 / 08 / 23 - 1 minute read

Battery energy storage systems will be a critical part of electrical grids that are being transformed by renewable energy production.  As a potential investment, such battery systems have some of the classic infrastructure qualities of being an essential service and benefitting from government support. But there are also many unknowns.

Utility-scale battery energy storage systems are an often overlooked part of the transition of electrical grids worldwide to renewable energy. While some renewable energy installations have accompanying batteries to store energy, large utility-scale batteries will be necessary to store and release electric energy in order to provide the constant flow of electric energy that society relies on, and that government electricity market operators provide. As a relatively nascent technology, utility-scale batteries have many future unknowns, but from an investment point of view, they will be a required part of any energy transition to more renewable energy and to date, governments have primarily relied on private investment for their construction and operation. These are good investment qualities to have.


John O'Brien

Justin Webb

John O’Brien


John heads infrastructure manager research within the Investment Solutions Group. His areas of expertise within the group also include global equities and alternative credit strategies. From 1998 to 2007, John was a director with Standard & Poor’s, where he rated more than 200 structured credit transactions and developed the first industry benchmarks for structured credit funds. From 2007-2010, he was a director at two global banks. From 2010 to 2012, he was head of research at van Eyk Research.

John O'Brien

Justin Webb


Justin leads the Investment Solutions team, which is responsible for providing strategic advice and building investment strategies for institutional and government clients. Justin’s particular fields of expertise centred around developing and managing investment risk management strategies and developing alternative asset portfolio plans for institutional investors, focusing on liquidity and illiquid asset investment programs. Justin is a Chartered Accountant and a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors with extensive experience in infrastructure investment, corporate finance and financial modelling together with performance analysis, reporting and alternative asset management. Justin sits on PATRIZIA’s Listed and Unlisted Infrastructure Investment Committees and is member of PATRIZIA Infrastructure’s Valuation Committee.

Canberra, Australia

Justin Webb

Managing Director Infrastructure Investment Solutions