ABB partners with SMC power unit to install battery energy systems

GLOBAL company ABB Ltd. said it had partnered with San Miguel Corp.’s (SMC) power arm to install three battery energy storage systems (BESS) in the country this year.

The partnership is part of a “multimillion-dollar” contract that was awarded to ABB in 2019, the Switzerland-based firm said in a statement on Tuesday.

The battery energy systems are part of SMC Global Power Holdings Corp.’s nationwide project.

“ABB will support two 20 MW (megawatts) of sites which will be installed by June 2021, with a further 40-MW site in July 2021. The remaining sites will be completed in 2022,” ABB said.

This is in line with the country’s aim to decarbonize its energy generation and ensure that over 50% of its energy mix will come from renewables by 2040, it added.

ABB said the Philippine project will use its software platform ABB Ability™ Zenon, which allows users to make real-time decisions based on grid parameters.

“By combining the knowledge of our Packaging and Solutions Global Execution team, based in Manila, with the local grid knowledge of the SMC team, we are proud to support the most ambitious BESS project in Southeast Asia,” President of ABB’s Distribution Solutions Division Alessandro Palin said.

BESS systems, he said, are “transforming” the market and improving grid performance across the globe.

“Pioneering solutions like the one in the Philippines will ensure that grids are more stable and will satisfy the reliability challenges associated with moving to a stronger mix of renewables,” Mr. Palin added.

In April, the local diversified conglomerate said that SMC Global Power was spending over $1 billion to build new battery energy storage systems with a rated capacity of 1,000 MW. It said 31 new projects were underway, with some storage facilities in the advanced stages of completion.

SMC President Ramon S. Ang previously said that the firm’s investments in BESS will benefit consumers across the country since far-flung and isolated areas will have access to stable and reliable power once the storage systems are set in place.

SMC posted a first-quarter attributable net income of P9.30 billion, a reversal of its previous losses of P1.27 billion in the same period last year, on the back of higher profits and improved operating income.

Its shares at the local bourse inched up 0.17% or 20 centavos to finish at P116.10 apiece on Tuesday. — Angelica Y. Yang