Royal Dutch Shell has agreed to acquire Germany-based virtual power plant (VPP) operator Next Kraftwerke as part of plans to expand its business in the electricity market. The deal, which is subject to approval by regulatory authorities, will enable Shell to acquire 100pc of the Cologne-based trading company. The transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2021. Shell Overseas Investment is making the purchase, and neither party has disclosed the deal’s financial terms. The purchase is expected to strengthen Shell’s Renewables and Energy Solutions division. Shell aims to double its electricity business to about 560TWh by 2030. Following the acquisition, Next Kraftwerke will operate as a portfolio company in the Shell group under its existing brand and core management team. Kraftwerke is one of the largest operators of VPPs in Europe, digitally networking and controlling more than 10,000 decentralised energy units in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland and Switzerland. Link to the news: https://www.energy-storage.news/news/shell-expands-role-in-vpp-market-with-acquisition-of-german-operator-next-k