Peter Atherton leads the Utilities Equity Research team at Liberum Capital Ltd., an independent investment bank.
Interview with Peter Atherton
What do you find most interesting about the Erasmus Centre for Future Energy Business?
I think it’s the coming together of research and business. Practitioners in capital markets should definitely be in that mix too.
What’s the most useful feature of the Erasmus Energy Forum event?
The Forum has a very international profile with speakers from the USA, the UK and Europe. Not very many events are quite so international.
Why will participants find your presentation useful?
I will give insights into the difficulties of convincing capital markets to fund European energy policy. This is an issue experienced across Europe. Activities that are more regulated and therefore give a guaranteed return – for example electricity networks – are much easier to fund than renewables. This does vary from country to country but generally speaking it’s true.
Will your presentation contain any exclusives?
It will be new information for some in the audience, but this is the kind of information we supply to investors.
Which of our other speakers or presentations are you most interested in hearing, and why?
I know of only a couple of the speakers, so I’m interested to hear all of them.
Can you give an indication of how Liberum Capital is preparing for the changes in the energy market?
We’re an investment bank that has helped raised at least GB£1 billion of capital over the past six years for clean technology companies. Liberum Capital focuses on development capital for small company start-ups and is very active in this sector. It’s a modest amount by big bank standards but this kind of ‘boutique’ role for raising capital values between GB£50 million and GB£500 million is a specialism of ours. There’s a strong need for it because a lot of the innovation and development of new technologies in clean energy and water comes from smaller companies.
What are your goals?
To continue in my job; giving the right investment advice to institutional investors. I have no personal view about which company or which technology is likely to be successful; I decide only which one is likely to be a financial success and if its share price will go up.
Where do you see yourself five years from now?
I’ll still be in the City of London, advising investors and in a similar role, it’s good fun.