At a time when US utilities face pressure to rely more on renewable energy, a well-known investor in the space said it is equally important to judge companies by their spending on less glamorous areas like power lines and grid reliability.

Kera Van Valen, managing director and portfolio manager at Epoch Investment Partners, said she finds companies including Ameren Corp and WEC Energy Group Inc appealing because of their infrastructure spending.

Those companies – and their regulators – understand that “you’re going to need to connect more and more to the alternative energy sources and you need that distribution network to be able to do so,” Van Valen said at the Reuters Global Investment Outlook 2020 Summit in New York.

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