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Atlassian co-CEO invests in Australian power firm to drive it to go greener

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Atlassian Co-CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes poses for a photograph with Utah Jazz co-owners, Dwyane Wade and Ryan Smith throughout Round 1 Game 3 of the NBA Playoffs on April 21, 2022 at vivint.SmartHome Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Melissa Majchrzak | National Basketball Association | Getty Images

Atlassian Co-CEO Mike Cannon-Brookes has taken an 11% stake in Australia’s most distinguished utility corporations, AGL Energy, in an effort to drive it to burn much less coal, a significant contributor to local weather change.

The Australian software program billionaire, who grew to become a component proprietor of the United States’ Utah Jazz basketball staff in 2020, purchased the stake by his non-public funding group Grok Ventures. He’s now the biggest single holder within the firm.

Cannon-Brookes has spoken out about threats from local weather change, and is now appearing on his issues after the corporate rejected a earlier takeover bid from him and different buyers.

The new marketing campaign goals to cease AGL’s proposed break up into two corporations: Energy retailer AGL Australia and electrical energy generator Accel Energy. AGL Energy Chairman Peter Botten wrote in a letter to buyers that the break up would assist Australia’s power system responsibly transfer towards decarbonization and create worth over the long run.

Cannon-Brookes does not share that view.

“The demerger makes no sense, or cents. We believe it destroys value for everyone — shareholders, employees, Australia and the planet,” he wrote in a tweet on Monday. He urged different AGL Energy buyers to vote in opposition to the proposal.

He elaborated on his place in a letter to AGL Energy’s board.

“Under the demerger proposal, AGL A [Australia] will continue to source a majority of its energy from Accel Energy, which today generates electricity with 50% higher emissions intensity than the rest of the grid,” he wrote. “We believe this exposure to coal-fired power generation is inconsistent with your proposal that AGL A [Australia] will be a leader in sustainability.”

Cannon-Brookes and his pal from the University of New South Wales, Scott Farquhar, based Atlassian in 2002. The collaboration software program maker went public in 2015, and with income progress charges sometimes above the 30% mark, the inventory grew to become a favourite amongst progress buyers.

Growth software program corporations, notably those who sometimes lose cash like Atlassian, have misplaced their sheen in latest months as rates of interest enhance.

But Cannon-Brookes stays one of many world’s wealthiest folks. He and Farquhar every personal 19% of Atlassian’s excellent Class A shares, that are price a mixed $25 billion.

In October, Cannon-Brookes and his spouse, Annie, made a “green pledge,” committing to spend over $1.5 billion on local weather initiatives by 2030. Grok Ventures has invested in renewable power firm Sun Cable, which is creating infrastructure to retailer solar energy in Australia and transfer it to Singapore. Grok Ventures additionally backed WeaveGrid, a San Francisco-based electric-vehicle software program start-up.

WATCH: National Grid CEO on the highway to “net zero” and fossil-free warmth within the Northeastern U.S.



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