31 March 2022

Burges Salmon has advised long-standing client ITM Power PLC, the energy storage and clean fuel company, on a strategic partnership with Vitol Holdings SARL for Motive Fuels Limited (Motive) to become a 50/50 joint-venture owned between ITM Power and Vitol.

ITM Power’s vision is to help the world reach net zero through the power of green hydrogen. For the past twenty years, the company has been designing and manufacturing electrolyser systems that generate green hydrogen based on proton exchange membrane (PEM) technology. The electrolysers require just renewable energy and water, with oxygen and water vapour the only by-products.

Vitol is an energy and commodities company, working to trade and distribute energy safely and responsibly around the world using logistical expertise and infrastructure networks.

Motive owns all UK public hydrogen refuelling stations constructed by ITM Power. It was set up as a division in 2020 and became a separate legal entity in May 2021.  Following completion of the joint venture, it will now operate as a distinct entity with its own board, which will comprise three directors from ITM Power and three from Vitol.

As part of the transaction, Motive has entered into a framework agreement with ITM Power, under which Motive appoints ITM Power as its preferred supplier for up to 240 MW of electrolysis equipment to support Motive with the development and roll-out of new green hydrogen refuelling stations.  Motive has also appointed Vitol as its preferred supplier for up to 240 MW of electricity demand, which will provide green power to the network of new refuelling stations.

The Burges Salmon team advising ITM Power on the joint venture was led by partner Mark Shepherd, alongside senior associate Amy Carr from the firm’s Corporate Finance team, together with partners Ross Fairley and Helen Scott-Lawler from the firm's Hydrogen and Commercial teams.

Graham Cooley, CEO, ITM Power PLC and a Director of ITM Motive, comments: “We are grateful to Mark and the Burges Salmon team for their legal support on the establishment of our joint venture. Vitol are another strong partner for the ITM Power group whose scale and market reach, combined with our expertise, will provide Motive with a pathway to become a much larger and more valuable business with multiple options in due course for realising value for our shareholders.

Mark Shepherd adds: “We’re absolutely delighted to have been able to support the team at ITM to put this exciting joint venture in place. The combination of ITM’s technology and expertise with Vitol’s scale and market penetration creates a fabulous opportunity for Motive to scale-up and play its part in helping the world reach net zero through the power of green hydrogen.

Key contact

Mark Shepherd

Mark Shepherd Partner

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