Billionaire mining magnate Andrew Forrest says Australia had a big opportunity to grab a share of a hydrogen market which could be as big as US$12 trillion by 2050.

That dwarfs the scale of its $150 billion a year iron ore export industry.

His new Fortescue Future Industries arm has set an ambitious target to become a hydrogen production and export powerhouse by producing 15Mtpa of green hydrogen by 2030 and ramping up to 50Mtpa.

Jack Colreavy, Corporate Finance Associate at Barclay Pearce Capital, says green hydrogen has been touted to become Australia’s largest export.

Colreavy reviews three pre-IPO companies looking to be the next energy giants through the export of green hydrogen.

“Barclay Pearce Capital … has raised vital capital for these companies in order to realise their potential in this developing industry,” he says.



Listing: Q1 2022

WA-based IBE has a global pipeline of green hydrogen projects in development. The company’s most advanced project is the Arrowsmith Green Hydrogen Project (AGHP) 270km north of Perth.

“The three-stage project has an end goal of 265 tons per day (tpd) of green hydrogen derived from solar and wind assets,” Colreavy says.

“Construction of Stage 1 will produce 23 tpd and begin at the start of 2022 with a $2.1B offtake agreement already secured.

IBE recently scored Peter Coleman — former CEO and director of $19 billion market cap energy producer Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL) — as independent chairman.

“Peter adds a lifetime of energy experience to an already well-credentialled team but also signals to the market that green hydrogen has a bright future and IBE will be among the leaders of that future,” Colreavy says.



Listing: Q4 2021

NSW-based Sweetman has its roots in the timber industry.

While lumber products are going through a bull market right now, it is the renewable biomass industry that is set to transform the company.

“Traditionally, roughly 50% of a tree ends up as a finished product while the other half is a waste product,” Colreavy says.

“However, the development of biomass power generation is making that waste product extremely valuable.

“Already, the company has signed an offtake agreement for US$90m with a Japanese conglomerate to supply 60k tonnes annually for the next 20 years and more contracts could potentially be on the way in the near future.”

Sweetman also has plans to develop green hydrogen assets through an agreement with Aussie company Patriot Hydrogen.

The Patriot to Hydrogen reactor uses biomass as a feedstock to produce renewable energy directly to a generator or filtered to produce pure green hydrogen for storage and export.

Sweetman is conducting a pre-IPO capital raise prior to their intended ASX listing in Q4 2021.



Listing: Unknown

The company’s flagship asset is the Verdant Energy Hub, a former coal power station in the Hunter Valley that is being converted into a 151MW biomass plant.

This asset will enable consistent base-load power and provide a green alternative to the current fossil fuel base-load options, Colreavy says.

“Moreover, through the acquisition of Monarch Hydrogen, Verdant is able to leverage its hydrogen technology at sites around Australia,” he says.

“Already behind-the-meter plans are being finalised at the Verdant Energy Hub to create green hydrogen for export out of Newcastle.

“More recently, Verdant established an alliance with the Port of Darwin to establish a green hydrogen facility at the closest Australian port to Asia.”

At Stockhead, we tell it like it is. While Infinite Blue Energy, Verdant, and Sweetman Renewables are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.

The views, information, or opinions expressed in the interviews in this article are solely those of the interviewees and do not represent the views of Stockhead. Stockhead does not provide, endorse or otherwise assume responsibility for any financial product advice contained in this article.