That has attracted the attention of several major investors since Origin struck the $507 million deal for its original investment in May last year.
“With continued strong growth in its own customer base and the licensing of its Kraken technology to leading retailers around the world, it is unsurprising that Octopus is attracting the attention of major global investors,” said Origin chief executive Frank Calabria.
“CPPI is one of the world’s largest public pension funds and its investment in Octopus will provide further support to execute its strategy and accelerate investment in global growth, as the company targets 100 million customer accounts on Kraken by 2027.”
Octopus said the CPPI deal would see the Canadian fund provide an initial $US300 million of equity funding to help grow the Kraken platform, “supercharging the development of a smart grid”. It will also fund an additional 30 wind turbines to its local wind energy venture, Fan Club, which allows communities to benefit from locally generated renewable energy.
Mr Calabria said that Origin saw the potential in Octopus when it acquired the 20 per cent stake, “and we remain highly optimistic about the growth outlook for the business, which has added a further 1.1 million customers in the UK in the past three months alone”.
Origin noted that Octopus has continued to expand into new markets, most recently in Italy, which followed acquisitions in Spain, Texas and New Zealand, and a strategic partnership with Tokyo Gas in Japan.
Bitcoin falls 9.3% to $36,955
Bitcoin dropped 9.28% to $36,955.03 at 22:02 GMT on Friday, losing $3,781.02 from its previous close.
Bitcoin, the world’s biggest and best-known cryptocurrency, is up 2.4% from the year’s low of $36,146.42.
Ether, the coin linked to the ethereum blockchain network, dropped 12.27% to $2,631.35 on Friday, losing $368.18 from its previous close.
(Reporting by Jaiveer Singh Shekhawat in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)
Oil, gas investment forecast to rise 22% in Canada – Investment Executive
It’s positive news for an industry that has now essentially recovered to its pre-pandemic levels, after a disastrous 2020 that saw oil prices collapse due to the impact of Covid-19 on global demand.
But CAPP president Tim McMillan pointed out that in spite of the fact that oil prices are at seven-year highs and companies are recording record cash flows, capital investment remains well below what it was during the industry’s boom years. In 2014, for example, capital investment in the Canadian oilpatch hit an all-time record high of $81 billion, capturing 10% per cent of total global upstream natural gas and oil investment.
“Today we’re at $32 billion, and we’re only capturing about six% of global investment,” McMillan said. “We’ve lost ground to other oil and gas producers, which I think is problematic for a lot of reasons . . . and it leaves billions of dollars of investment that is going somewhere else, and not to Canada.”
Investment in conventional oil and natural gas is forecast at $21.2 billion in 2022, according to CAPP, while growth in oilsands investment is expected to increase 33% to $11.6 billion this year.
Alberta is expected to lead all provinces in overall oil and gas capital spending, with upstream investment expected to increase 24% to $24.5 billion in 2022. Over 80% of the industry’s new capital spending this year will be focused in Alberta, representing an additional $4.8 billion of investment into the province compared with 2021, according to CAPP.
While the 2022 forecast numbers are good news for the Canadian economy, McMillan said, it’s a problem that companies aren’t willing to invest in this country’s industry at the level they once did.
He said investors have been put off by Canada’s record of cancelled pipeline projects, regulatory hurdles and negative government policy signals, and many now see Canada as a “difficult place to invest.”
However, Rory Johnston, managing director and market economist at Toronto-based Price Street Inc., said laying the decline in the industry’s capital spending at the feet of the federal government is overly simplistic.
He added while current “rip-roaring, amazing” cash flows and a period of sustained high oil prices will certainly give some producers the appetite to invest this year, Johnston said, it will likely be on a project-by-project basis and certainly on a smaller scale than the major oilsands expansions of a decade ago.
“You have global macro trends across the entire industry that have begun to favour smaller, fast-cycle investment projects – and most oilsands projects are literally the polar opposite of that,” he said.
One reason capital spending isn’t likely to return to boom time levels is because companies have become much more cost-efficient after surviving a string of lean years. And that’s not a bad thing, Johnston said.
“The decade of capex boom out west was tremendously beneficial for Canada and Albertans, but it also caused tremendous cost inflation,” he said.
“While what we’re seeing right now is not as construction-heavy and not as employment-heavy – and those are two very, very large downsides – the upside is that you’re much more competitive in a much more competitive oil market,” Johnston said.
In a report released this week, the International Energy Agency (IEA) hiked its oil demand growth forecast for the coming year by 200,000 barrels a day, to 3.3 million barrels a day.
According to the IEA, global oil demand will exceed pre-pandemic levels this year due to growing Covid-19 immunization rates and the fact that the new Omicron variant hasn’t proved severe enough to force a return to strict lockdown measures.
Toronto index set for biggest weekly drop since early December
Canada’s main stock index fell on Friday as weaker crude oil prices weighed on energy stocks, putting the benchmark index on course for its biggest weekly drop since early December.
At 9:35 a.m. ET (14:35 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 141.11 points, or 0.67%, at 20,917.07. It hit a more than two-week low in the previous session.
The index has lost 2.4% so far this week, hurt by higher bond yields as expectations build that central banks will hike interest rates over the coming months to tame unruly inflation.
The healthcare and technology sectors have dominated the weekly losses, dropping 7.4% and 4.5%, respectively.
On Friday, the energy sector led the declines with a fall of 1.9% as an unexpected rise in U.S. crude and fuel inventories profit-booking pressured crude oil prices.[O/R]
The financials sector slipped 0.8%, while the industrials sector fell 0.5%.
The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, lost 0.4% on weaker copper prices. [MET/L]
On the economic front, data showed Canadian retail sales rose 0.7% to C$58.08 billion ($46.40 billion) in November on higher sales at gasoline stations, and building materials and gardening equipment and supplies dealers.
“Canadian retail sales for November grew less than expected, while new house price inflation plateaued at a high level, another sign of stagflation in the North American economy,” said Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management.
The TSX posted one new 52-week highs and 10 new lows.
Across all Canadian issues there were two new 52-week highs and 55 new lows, with total volume of 32.05 million shares.
(Reporting by Amal S in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)
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