Plug’s European Port Deal is ‘A Really Big Deal,’ Say Leading Analysts

June 13, 2022

Plug’s recently announced agreement with the Port of Antwerp-Bruges — the second largest port in Europe — to produce 35 tons per day of liquid green hydrogen was described as a key piece to the “creation of a hydrogen economy.”

Port of Antwerp signing
Andy Marsh and Jacques Vandermeiren, CEO Port of Antwerp-Bruges, sign the agreement

In a June 12 report by Evercore ISI, analysts detailed Plug’s 30-year concession agreement with the Belgian port to build a 100-megawatt green hydrogen plant using the company’s leading PEM electrolyzers. The plant will produce up to 12,500 tons per year of liquid and gaseous green hydrogen for the European market.

With the port being home to 1,400 companies and handling 289 million tons of maritime freight, 24 million tons of rail freight, and 108.5 million tons of barge freight per year, Evercore said the agreement is key to the future of hydrogen.

“We are firm believers that ports and port operations are perfect industrial complexes for the use of hydrogen and these will play a key role in the creation of a hydrogen economy,” the report said.
“Plug is leading the charge and is favorite way to invest in hydrogen. We remain Outperform on PLUG.”

Plug will build in the port’s NextGen District, an area dedicated to companies supporting the circular economy. In fact, the port is within 300 miles of 60% of Europe’s purchasing power.

“The strategic location of the port near a large chemical industry cluster and close to the North Sea is well suited for the anticipated buildout of wind power in Europe,” the Evercore report said. “The countries on the North Sea are all expected to be major producers of wind power and have committed to grow capacity to 65 GW by 2030 and 150 GW by 2050 (up from 15 GW today) as part of a recent agreement with Belgium, Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands.”

Construction of the plant will begin upon completion of the permitting process, which is anticipated in late 2023. Initial production of green hydrogen is expected in late 2024, and the plant will be commissioned in 2025.

The Port of Antwerp-Bruges plant joins other investments Plug has made in Europe, including the opening of a service and logistics center in Germany, the acquisition of Frames and the HYVIA joint venture with Renault.

So, yes, Evercore — this is all a really big deal!