THE appeal of offshore wind markets such as Scotland has been underlined by Australian investment bank Macquarie, which is launching a venture it expects to become one of the world’s largest specialist developers.

The Corio Generation business will start operating in April with headquarters in London and an office in Edinburgh.

Chief executive Jonathan Cole said Corio expects to play a significant role in accelerating the deployment of offshore wind around the world, amid increasing demand for green energy.

He said it will combine some of the world’s best financial and industrial expertise.

The business will inherit the extensive offshore wind portfolio developed by Macquarie’s Green Investment Group (GIG).

This includes acreage off Orkney on which GIG plans to develop a windfarm with French oil giant TotalEnergies. The firms were among successful bidders in the landmark ScotWind leasing round, which attracted huge interest.

READ MORE: Oil giants hail ScotWind success amid claims huge boost to supply chain in prospect

GIG’s offshore wind business also has a stake in the East Anglia One windfarm off England developed by ScottishPower.

Mr Cole used to run the offshore wind business developed by ScottishPower’s owner Iberdrola.

Macquarie said GIG has played a pivotal role in the development of the UK’s offshore wind market, which it described as the most mature of its kind in in the world.

“Over recent years GIG has used that experience to accelerate the deployment of offshore wind in new markets like Taiwan and Korea, building up a +15 GW global development pipeline which will now be taken forward by Corio,” said the bank.

Mark Dooley, Global Head of GIG, said: “Consolidating that momentum and capability into Corio gives this business the opportunity to be a leading player in the next era of offshore wind.

He added: “Corio will apply all its energy to deliver the next generation of offshore wind projects in established and emerging markets worldwide.”

READ MORE: ScottishPower feels gas price impact as windfarm output drops

GIG developed out of the Green Investment Bank. This was established by the UK Government in 2012, with headquarters in Edinburgh. Macquarie bought the bank from the Government for £1.7bn in 2017. GIG has offices in London and Edinburgh.

Mr Cole sat on ScottishPower’s executive board while he was at Iberdrola.