CATALYST INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT

Jordan 2019 | GREEN ECONOMY | INTERVIEW
Ennis Rimawi
BIOGRAPHY
Ennis Rimawi is the founder and Managing Director of Catalyst Investment Management, an energy/water private equity fund manager/advisor. Rimawi began his career in the US with Ford Motor Company and later founded ONEWORLD Software Solutions in Boston. He graduated from MIT in 1991 and concluded a dual master's from the Sloan School of Management and Department of Civil/Environmental Engineering. He is also the Chairman of Falcon Maan Solar Power and Director of Shamsuna, Eagle, and Peacock Solar power projects. He is a board member of the DIFC-regulated AJEEJ Capital and Tamweelcom, an award-winning micro finance company. He is a co-founder of EDAMA, Jordan’s renewable energy association, and a member of the WEF’s Young Global Leaders Alumni program.

What opportunities are emerging to export technologies from Jordan?

In the case of renewable energy in particular, Jordan is a regional leader in solar photovoltaic (PV). It was the first country to establish multiple, commercially based solar PV independent power producers (IPPs). Jordanian companies are now looking at Egypt, Lebanon, Tunisia, Morocco, Palestine, and Saudi Arabia to develop and execute projects. The same happened in solar heating after we invested in Millennium Energy Industries, a specialized Jordanian solar heating EPC with proprietary cooling and desalination technology. The opportunity for Jordan in solar energy is the regional market and perhaps the CIS region.

What dimensions does Catalyst Investment Management bring to its partnerships?

One of the dimensions we bring is our leading regional experience in solar PV. Our second strength is our credentials, as our investors are primarily European government investors.

Catalyst Investment Management's new fund seeks to co-develop over 700MW of renewable projects. What are the latest updates on that plan?

We have a finite amount of capital, though it also depends on how we bring partners into our projects, not to mention the costs, which are falling. We already have 43MW either in operation or under construction. We are currently pursuing about another 200MW through bidding or negotiating. Thus far, 80% of activity is in Jordan, though we target a ratio of 70% in Jordan and 30% in other markets. We are also bidding on projects and studying opportunities in wind, storage, LED lighting, and solar thermal. Outside of Jordan, we are exploring opportunities in Egypt, Tunisia, and Morocco. We also feel that Palestine, Iraq, and Syria are important in terms of exporting electricity from Jordan. They are on the government's agenda because we have too much power and renewable energy in Jordan, which is a problem for the local renewables industry.