“Our planet is at crisis point – we must act now.” 


Starling Energy Group is one step closer to developing the world’s largest Virtual Power Plant (VPP) after reaching an agreement with SUSI Partners, the Swiss fund manager specialising in sustainable energy investments, to fund up to AUD $50 million in residential solar plus storage systems in WA, making affordable renewable energy available to everyday Australians.

The agreement will see Starling Energy act as the preferred global developer for VPP projects, installation manager and VPP operator for SUSI Partners, which in turn will be the sole financier to the projects.

This is an exciting occasion for Starling Energy’s Managing Director, Brian Innes, who has spent his 20- plus year career working towards this goal.

“We’re really excited by what this agreement means. It will allow everyday West Australians to transform our energy system as fast as it takes to sign up online,” Innes said.

“Our planet is at crisis point – we must act now. By ending our reliance on traditional fossil power that contributes drastically to climate change, we now have a viable cleaner option by harnessing the energy of the sun.”

Matteo Zanni, Director in SUSI Partners’ investment team, commented: “We worked closely with Starling Energy and our advisors to reach this milestone. This architecture represents a new and exciting way of supporting the energy transition, enabling local communities to benefit from clean energy, while providing contracted revenues for our investors.”

Starling is rolling out the program in WA under the dedicated Plico Energy brand, aiming to build a VPP which puts communities at the centre of the energy transition, with plans to expand the scheme to other parts of the country from mid-2020.

Plico Energy makes sustainable energy available to WA households via a fully managed energy service, managed by Starling Energy, which includes solar panels and battery inverter storage solution. The system allows Plico participants to produce, control and consume up to 90% of their own energy, helping to decarbonise the energy mix in West Australia.

Starling Energy has spent the last two years developing Plico Energy and they are supported, in addition to SUSI Partners, by key suppliers, including the Sonepar and Redback Technologies, an Australian-based smart hybrid inverter and VPP software technology company.