Kibo to deploy VRFB energy storage in Southern Africa

Kibo to deploy VRFB energy storage in Southern Africa

Kibo Energy, a renewable energy-focused development company, has signed a five-year agreement with Enerox (CellCube), to develop and deploy CellCube based long-duration energy storage solutions (LDES) in Southern Africa.

Blue View

The five-year agreement will see Kibo deploy >1GW of CellCube’s VRFBs in targeted Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries.  Under the agreement, Kibo has been granted conditional exclusive rights to the marketing, sales, configuration, and delivery of CellCube's vanadium redox flow batteries in the development of its LDES solutions in microgrid applications behind the meter. For any utility-scale projects, the parties will work on a non-exclusive basis.

Kibo intends to develop an order pipeline with firm annual commitments from its already existing project pipeline of up to 21,200 installations, ranging from small scale 40kWh to larger 2,000kWh systems per installation, in target sectors consisting of ICT towers, gated communities, shopping centres and commercial parks. In addition, the parties will also review an already identified bespoke renewable energy microgrid project pipeline.

The announcement is another positive step towards more widespread VRFB adoption.  Project Blue believes the future of VRFB commercialisation to be a somewhat binary story: it will happen, or it won’t.  In our base case, demand starts to ramp up from 2022 onwards, driven by China but with additional uptake in the ROW.

South Africa has the potential to play an important role in the ex-China VRFB story.  The country is the third-largest vanadium feedstock producer in the world, accounting for around 7% of global supply, with all output coming from Glencore and Bushveld Minerals.  The latter has a 26% stake in CellCube via its Bushveld Energy subsidiary.  The Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC) has prioritised energy storage as one of the mechanisms to be pursued in decarbonising the South African economy and to help the country achieve its decarbonisation goals.  The IDC and Bushveld Energy signed a co-operation agreement for the execution of a feasibility study to co-develop a VRFB industry in South Africa in December last year.

  • 19 May 2022
  • South Africa
  • Bushveld Minerals
  • Vanadium

Like what you read? Subscribe now to get Project Blue's news analysis for free in your inbox every Monday.

Subscribe Now