The Australian mining giant has invested nearly NOK 100 million (approximately $8.9 million) to acquire a 12.5% ownership stake in Norwegian Hydrogen, making it the third-largest shareholder in the company.
The move by Fortescue underscores the growing importance of green hydrogen as a key player in the global effort to combat climate change. Mark Hutchinson, CEO of Fortescue Energy, emphasized the urgency of transitioning away from fossil fuels and toward green hydrogen and ammonia production at scale. He stated, “Climate change is here now, and business needs to work together to combat it. Decarbonizing hard-to-abate sectors and stepping the world beyond fossil fuels is imperative.”
In partnering with Norwegian Hydrogen, Fortescue aims to participate in the expansion of the entire green hydrogen value chain, aligning with its own projects in Norway and supporting the broader green hydrogen and ammonia industry. The collaboration comes at a crucial time, given the surging interest in green hydrogen for various applications.
Norwegian Hydrogen, a prominent player in the green hydrogen sector, is already constructing hydrogen plants in strategic locations, including Hellesylt and Hjørring in Denmark. In addition, the company has announced ambitious plans to establish one of the largest green hydrogen production facilities in the Nordic region in Ålesund. It has also formed a subsidiary called Vireon, which will build hydrogen refueling stations for heavy-duty vehicles in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland.
On the other hand, Fortescue is actively expanding its portfolio of green hydrogen and ammonia projects. The company is developing two potential projects in Norway, including the Holmaneset project in Bremanger, which is set to be a 300-megawatt green hydrogen and green ammonia facility. A similar facility with a capacity of 300 megawatts is planned for the Hemnes municipality. According to Thor Magnus Rovik, Fortescue Norway’s Country Manager, partnering with Nordic companies like Norwegian Hydrogen is crucial for ensuring the region’s leadership in the production and supply of green hydrogen products across Europe.
Notably, Fortescue is the second global company to invest in Norwegian Hydrogen. In August 2022, the Japanese corporation Mitsui also became the owner of the company, highlighting the international interest in the growing green hydrogen industry.
In addition to Fortescue’s substantial investment, Norwegian Hydrogen recently raised approximately NOK 50 million ($4.4 million) from existing and new investors in its network. This funding round values the company at around NOK 750 million ($66.7 million). The company is actively pursuing further capital raising as part of its corporate development strategy, demonstrating strong financial backing in the green hydrogen sector.