Several months after becoming chairman, billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes announced on Wednesday (Jan. 11) that Singapore-based Sun Cable is entering voluntary administration.
With the support of tech billionaire and climate activist Cannon-Brookes and Australia’s richest man Andrew Forrest, the company hopes to develop an A$30 billion-plus (S$27.6 billion) project to supply solar power from Australia to Singapore.
Cannon-Brookes and fellow Australian billionaire Forrest were unable to agree on the megaproject’s future course of action or funding structure, so it has run out of money.
This led to the business appointing FTI Consulting as a voluntary administrator.
As construction was scheduled to start in 2024, this puts the proposed Australia-Asia PowerLink solar power export project in jeopardy.
Obtaining new funding or selling the company entirely will probably be the next step, according to Sun Cable.
Sun Cable’s new chairman, Cannon-Brookes, stated that he was still optimistic about the project.
“I fully back this ambition and the team, and look forward to supporting the company’s next chapter,” he said in a statement.
The other significant stakeholder in Sun Cable, privately held Squadron Energy, owned by iron ore magnate Forrest, made no comments in the statement.
According to a person familiar with the company’s thinking who requested anonymity due to confidentiality clauses, it is still possible for Squadron to put together a funding deal for the administrators.
Not all of the A$210 million in capital raised last year was made available because some of the milestones were not yet reached.
Future steps are probably going to involve FTI Consulting, the business’s voluntary administrators, either looking for new funding or selling the company entirely, Sun Cable said.