Johnston Carmichael strengthens Infrastructure and Renewables offering

Mark Stewart

Mark Stewart

Corporate Finance Partner

Johnston Carmichael’s expertise in the infrastructure and renewables sectors has been bolstered by the addition of a new team who have joined the firm this month from RSM UK.

Corporate Finance Partner Mark Stewart will head up the team which also includes Associate Director Jamie Davidson and Corporate Finance Executive Mark Conetta.

Based across the Edinburgh and Glasgow offices of Scotland’s largest independent firm of Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers, the team will provide transactional advice to businesses operating in the infrastructure and renewables sectors across the whole of Scotland.

Mark Stewart was attracted to Johnston Carmichael because of the firm’s “entrepreneurial mind-set.”

He said: “The real attraction for me was to join a firm clearly passionate about the Scottish market, focused on growth and providing excellent services to clients up and down the country.

“When you look at Johnston Carmichael’s presence in Scotland, it’s hugely significant. There’s a real energy and enthusiasm here driven by the leadership team. It’s a firm that’s ambitious and continually progressing. There is already a strong team of experts in the renewables sector and with our specific skill set we will add another string to that bow.”

The service offering to the infrastructure and renewable energy market is a multidisciplinary one combining experts in corporate finance, financial modeling, tax, accounting and capital allowances.

In the infrastructure market the focus will continue to be on delivering NPD (Non-Profit Distributing) and hub projects in Scotland. There are also international opportunities through the strong PKF network.

In the renewable energy space, the team will continue to look for opportunities to advise funders, developers, landowners and estates, local government stakeholders and the community on projects in a number of technology categories such as onshore wind, hydro, solar PV, anaerobic digestion and CHP both within the UK and on an international basis.

Mark added: “Clearly there is a high degree of uncertainty in the renewables marketplace as a result of a number of recent policy announcements. Notwithstanding this, I believe the industry remains cautiously optimistic about the future.

"The Paris climate agreement on decarbonisation means that UK plc still needs more renewables and it should be looking to continue to deploy this at the lowest cost to the consumer and at the same time looking for new technologies that have genuine scope for large scale, low cost deployment over time as well as storage."

The team is particularly passionate about supporting Community Energy.

Mark continued: “There’s a natural benefit to the UK to retain this investment in the local communities which goes beyond a financial return, particularly where the community is in an impoverished state or in a remote area. We had first-hand experience of this in a deal we closed last year in the Western Isles - the largest community windfarm project in the UK.  “Once the deal had reached financial close, we were invited to visit a number of the beneficiaries of the community cash such as the local hospice and the drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre.

"It was an incredibly powerful experience to see how much of a difference the cash can make to these philanthropic organisations who have to raise every single penny of their funding to exist. It’s the multiplier effect, every pound of direct investment into a local community has huge societal impact."

Chief Executive Sandy Manson said: “Johnston Carmichael is a firm with strong values, heritage and tradition, but with a 21st century drive and aspiration for growth.

We really care about our clients and people. Mark and the team will bring a fresh approach to the infrastructure and renewables sector within our business and provide a level of specialist expertise that is much sought-after in the Scottish market.”