TSX.V Symbol: "WND"
OTCQX Symbol: "WNDEF"
Issued and Outstanding: 69,820,125
VANCOUVER, Jan. 14, 2013 /CNW/ - Western Wind Energy Corp. - (the "Company" or "Western Wind") (TSX Venture Exchange - "WND")
(OTCQX - "WNDEF") wishes to announce an update to its efforts with both
Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners L.P. ("Brookfield") and Western
Wind's sales process.
Western Wind is in the unique position of being both a substantial
renewable energy producer and a public company. The vast majority of
the plus 55,000 megawatts of installed wind capacity in North America
are owned by private companies or subsidiaries of regulated utilities.
Under an optimum and less complex private company sales process, assets
similar to that of Western Wind, take, from initiation to completion of
sale, at least 9 - 12 months. In fact, Brookfield's adjoining wind farm
(to Windstar) went through a two year sales process before Brookfield
purchased the remaining 50% interest. Western Wind has had the added
delay of a three month proxy battle and has had to deal with the "wet
blanket" interference of an ongoing hostile bid from Brookfield.
Western Wind is in charge of running this expeditious sales process on
behalf of all the stakeholders and cannot give preferential treatment
to an insider. Brookfield's interest is in opposition to that of the
rest of the shareholders as it logically seeks to acquire the remaining
84% of the Company at the lowest possible price. The date of January
28th, or any other date presented by Brookfield, is only relative to
Brookfield's self aligned interest and does not serve to benefit an
increased price offer.
With reference to comments from the CEO of Brookfield Renewable Energy
Partners, specifically Richard Legault's commentary describing our
recent credit facility of $25 million and the 400,000 share purchase
warrants exercisable at $2.50 per share issued as a bonus to the
lender, it is important to note that this was negotiated prior to the
sales process. More importantly, Mr. Legault should have provided our
shareholders in the Brookfield press release or in its offer circular
more details about the extensive prior dealings and negotiations
between Brookfield and Western Wind that led to a financing term sheet
proposal in October 2011 from an affiliate of Brookfield. In that
proposed term sheet, Brookfield offered to lend $60 million to Western
Wind in two phases: a first phase of $25 million and a second phase of
$35 million. In addition to fees and interest exceeding 13%, Brookfield
requested a bonus of 15% of the entire Company in the form of 9 million
share purchase warrants at a price indicative of the share price in
Western Wind rejected the above Brookfield offer, even after the request
by Brookfield was reduced to 6 million share purchase warrants.
Regarding Mr. Legault's comment that "the Brookfield offer was made
without due diligence", nothing could be further from the truth.
Principally, in the fall of 2011, Western Wind met with representatives
of Brookfield and its affiliates a number of times concerning the
business of Western Wind and how the two companies might work together.
At which time, extensive confidential material non-public information
about Western Wind was provided. Those meetings lead to the financing
proposal referred to earlier in this press release. Western Wind has
requested that the Ontario Securities Commission review the conduct of
Brookfield and consider whether Brookfield should have provided a
valuation opinion along with its offer. It is Western Wind's view that
a valuation opinion should have been provided in connection with the
Our strategy going forward is to complete financial close on Yabucoa as
this event will add substantial value to the shareholders of Western
Wind. Financial close by our lending group is deemed to have removed
all the risks associated with the project and implies a substantial
increase in value. This facilitates not only attracting a much better
price for the company as a whole, but an even greater price by the
splitting of assets to multiple buyers.
Additionally, Western Wind's four operating projects bring in enough
revenue every month to substantially reduce debt and increase
shareholder value. Western Wind will be sold in an expeditious and
sound manner and time is on the side of the Western Wind shareholder.
We strongly believe in Mr. Legault's objective of having a Board
supported approval of an acceptable Western Wind bid and the door is
still wide open between Brookfield and Western Wind.
ABOUT WESTERN WIND ENERGY CORP.
Western Wind is an independent vertically integrated renewable energy
production company that owns and operates wind and solar generation
facilities with 165 net MW of rated capacity operating in the States of
California and Arizona. Western Wind further owns substantial
development assets for both solar and wind energy in the U.S. The
Company is headquartered in Vancouver, BC and has branch offices in
Scottsdale, Arizona and Tehachapi, California. Western Wind trades on
the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol "WND", and in the United
States on the OTCQX under the symbol "WNDEF".
Western Wind owns and operates three wind energy generation facilities
in California, and one fully integrated combined wind and solar energy
generation facility in Arizona. The three operating wind generation
facilities in California are comprised of the 120MW Windstar, the 4.5MW
Windridge, both in Tehachapi, and the 30MW Mesa facility near Palm
Springs. The facility in Arizona is the Company's 10.5MW Kingman
integrated solar and wind facility. The Company is further developing
wind and solar energy projects in California, Arizona, and Puerto Rico.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Jeffrey J. Ciachurski
President & Chief Executive Officer
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider
(as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange)
accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT ON FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
This news release contains certain statements that may be considered
"forward-looking statements, such as references to the intended sale of
Western Wind and its assets. Forward looking statements are statements
that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always,
identified by the words "expects", "plans", "anticipates", "believes",
"intends", "estimates", "projects", "potential" and similar
expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may",
"could" or "should" occur. The forward-looking statements in this press
release include statements regarding the value of a potential sale of
the Company based on expressions of interest received from auction
participants, alternative sales discussions with third parties and
potential transactions resulting from such discussions. The
forward-looking statements included in this press release are based on
reasonable assumptions, including that the expressions of interest and
discussions with third parties may result in a higher potential sales
price and that the Company will be able to successfully negotiate and
complete a sale with a third party. Factors that may cause results to
vary from anticipations include the risk that the Company may not be
able to successfully negotiate a sale on terms more favourable than
pursuant to the Offer and even if it is able to negotiate such a sale,
that may not be able to satisfy applicable conditions, including
receipt of requisite approvals, or complete the transaction. Although
Western Wind believes the expectations expressed in the forward-looking
statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not
guarantees of future outcomes and actual results may differ materially
from those contained in forward looking statements. Forward looking
statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of Western
Wind's management on the date the statements are made. Western Wind
undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements in
the event that management's beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other
factors, should change, except as required by law.
SOURCE: Western Wind Energy
For further information:
Investor Relations Contact:
Tel: (416) 992-7227