Private equity and alternative asset manager Blackstone announced today the launch of ClearGen LLC, a new portfolio company that will finance and own distributed and sustainable energy infrastructure assets focused, on commercial, industrial and institutional customers. Blackstone will commit $250 million to the new company, through its credit-oriented asset management arm GSO, and stated that it expects to expand the commitment as capital is deployed.

Robert Horn, Senior Managing Director at Blackstone and Co-Head of GSO’s Energy Group, said:

“We are excited to partner with ClearGen and expand Blackstone’s investments in distributed and sustainable energy infrastructure. We look forward to working with ClearGen and its industry leading partners to meet the significant growth in behind-the-meter energy systems in North America.”

Through ClearGen, Blackstone will offer flexible capital solutions and programmatic investments alongside equipment manufacturers, developers and energy service companies who develop, build, and operate Distributed Infrastructure. He companies stated that these investments will deliver significant environmental benefits, cost savings, and enhanced energy resiliency to customers, allowing them to improve or develop mission-critical on-site energy infrastructure.

ClearGen will invest in a wide range of distributed infrastructure assets including microgrids, distributed generation, renewable energy combined with battery storage, energy efficiency investments, green transportation, and combined heat and power plants. These assets will serve multiple sectors, ranging from technology, telecommunications, healthcare, and real estate, to industrials and other commercial and industrial energy consumers. 

Rob Camacho, Senior Managing Director at Blackstone and Co-Head of GSO’s Structured Products group, said:

“Our initial investment will position ClearGen to offer the full range of low-cost, flexible capital through credit and insurance businesses that allows Blackstone to be a one-stop shop for infrastructure capital needs.”

ClearGen will be led by Co-founders George Plattenburg as CEO, and Collin Franceschi as Chief Development Officer. Plattenburg most recently led Plattenburg Ventures LLC, providing services including strategy design & execution, branding & positioning, M&A, business and sales plan development for leading energy and sustainability firms. Franceschi joins the new venture from Duke Energy, where he served as Manager of commercial development for commercial/industrial related energy infrastructure projects, partnerships and energy management functions.

Plattenburg said:

“Energy consumers face a range of challenges, including cost and risk management and the reliability of supply that affects critical operations. When you combine these with a broad focus on de-carbonization, there is a rapidly growing need for ClearGen’s capital and expertise.”

Franceschi added:

“We are looking forward to partnerships with distributed generation developers and technology companies, and collaboratively developing flexible solutions to improve financing alternatives and increase adoption. ClearGen will finance a wide range of revenue streams and diverse customers to allow our partners to accelerate growth.”