The deal gives an implied equity value in the range of around $305m and $586m to the combined entity Vast, based on the level of redemptions

63ec5615f3741ad3f1ae16f6_Jemalong pilot project

Vast Solar is a developer of concentrated solar power energy systems. (Credit: Vast Solar Pty Ltd)

Vast Solar, an Australia-based developer of concentrated solar power (CSP) energy systems, has agreed to merge with Nabors Energy Transition (NETC), a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) affiliated with Nabors Industries.

The deal gives an implied equity value in the range of around $305m and $586m to the combined company, based on the level of redemptions.

It will enable Vast Solar to go public in the US with trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The combined entity will be named Vast, which will continue to be headquartered in Australia.

Established in 2009, Vast has built a concentrated solar power system that is said to utilise a modular tower design and a sodium loop for heat transfer to capture and store solar heat efficiently and the subsequent conversion into clean and renewable power and heat.

Compared to traditional central tower concentrated solar power plants, Vast’s system is said to have been designed to enable increased efficiency, simplified permitting, quicker construction, and more reliable operations.

Vast CEO Craig Wood said: “Vast’s CSP technology collects and stores the sun’s energy during the day for delivery at any time, making around-the-clock, clean power a reality.

“While the cost of wind and PV solar have declined significantly, their intermittency remains a key challenge that can only be addressed with storage. By providing clean, renewable energy with low-cost, long-duration storage, our CSP system can be incorporated as dispatchable generation in a way that is not possible using PV solar or wind with batteries.

“We are excited to partner with NETC to accelerate the deployment of our technology globally.”

Presently, Vast is developing 230MW of concentrated solar power projects. These include a 30MW grid-connected plant in Port Augusta, Australia that is scheduled to begin operations in 2025 and a 20 tonnes per day solar methanol facility that will be co-located with and powered partially by the plant.

The company has a multi-GW pipeline of potential concentrated solar power projects to be built in various parts of the world.

Its SPAC deal is anticipated to deliver gross proceeds of up to $351m. This is made up of up to $286m from the trust account of Nabors Energy Transition, before giving effect to possible redemptions.

Nabors Industries and Vast’s existing owner AgCentral Energy will fund $15m each to the combined entity, while a minimum of $35m of capital will be targeted from third-party investors.

Nabors Industries chairman, president, and CEO and Nabors Energy Transition president and CEO Anthony Petrello said: “Vast has the potential to deliver low-cost, clean, renewable and dispatchable power and heat, a combination that no other technology has yet been able to achieve.”

The deal, which is subject to customary conditions, is expected to close in Q2 or Q3 of this year.