The ACCC has issued draft determinations proposing to grant authorisation to two separate buying groups, the Macquarie Group and the Equinix Group, to jointly tender and contract for electricity generated from renewable energy facilities in Victoria and NSW, respectively.

Interim authorisation has also been granted to allow the groups to commence their tender processes and collective negotiations for the supply contracts.

Macquarie Capital (Australia) and its parent company Macquarie Corporate Holdings (Macquarie Group) sought authorisation in June to identify a group of buyers and collectively negotiate power purchasing agreements with the developer of a new renewable energy project in Victoria, currently a large-scale wind farm.

Equinix (Australia) Enterprises, HSBC, Nike, Goldman Sachs and H&M (the ‘Equinix Group’) also sought authorisation to pool their electricity demand and to jointly tender and negotiate power purchasing agreements from a new or existing solar or wind electricity generation facility, likely in NSW.

The ACCC considers that the proposed joint purchasing arrangements in both applications are likely to result in public benefits in the form of transaction cost savings, greater investment in and competition for the supply of electricity, and environmental benefits through a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Both applications involve volumes of electricity which account for a relatively small proportion of electricity demand in the relevant markets. The risk of any public detriment arising from the proposed conduct is therefore minimal.

Further information about the ACCC’s draft determinations and interim authorisation decisions are available on the ACCC’s public register at: Macquarie Corporate Holdings Pty Ltd & Ors and Equinix (Australia) Enterprises Pty Ltd & Ors.