Varmalämmitys has agreed with Kokkola Energy on the construction in Kälviä, Finland of a biomass boiler plant using domestic fuel and on supply of generated heating to the district heating network of Kälviä.

Nordic infrastructure investor Infranode and KPA Unicon founded the new company Varmalämmitys Oy last winter. Varmalämmitys provides thermal energy as a service to energy companies. The concept is new and base on Infranode’s investment policy. The fund will become a long-term owner and partner in infrastructure projects with a 25-year commitment. For heat generation the time range is well suited as it corresponds to the lifetime of heating boilers.

“We bring to the market with an open mind a service model that guarantees our customers the availability of clean technology over a period of 25 years. So we guarantee security of supply in cost-effective and predictable manner”, says KPA Unicon’s Managing Director Teemu Koskela.

The concept of Varmalämmitys reflects the beginning of the breakthrough in the energy sector that has been using the same models for a long time. Energy has been sold as a service also before, but the model of Varmalämmitys shows that partnership networks can be built in a very open-minded way and that a technology company producing heating boilers can also be involved in the production.

For Kokkola Energy this agreement means that there is no need to invest, neither to send staff resources to the plant that will be built 20 km away from the company’s nearest office. “We wanted to continue our business activity in Kälviä in order to provide customers with affordable heat”, says Managing Director of Kokkola Energy Mikko Rintamäki. “We had to choose between the investment and partner and we have chosen the partner. Thus, capital is not committed to a long-term project and the balance sheet remains tidy.”

Heat energy is produced from wood-based fuel. “Wood fuel is classified as emission-free source,” Rintamäki continues. “Wood can be obtained locally and the activity has a positive impact on employment in neighboring areas. This is in all respects sustainable and responsible model.”

“We are very pleased that Kokkola Energy has chosen Varmalämmitys as a partner and we strongly believe that this encourages the energy companies to approach us when they plan to renew their district heating plants,” says Infranode’s Country Lead Finland Alex Graan, who is also the Chairman of the board of Varmalämmitys.