MONTRÉAL, Oct. 29, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Boralex Inc. ("Boralex"), Gaz Métro Limited Partnership ("Gaz Métro") and Valener Inc. ("Valener") announce the completion of a non-recourse financing totalling $166.1 million for Phase II of the Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms. This project, valued at approximately $200 million, has an installed capacity of 68 MW with commissioning scheduled for late 2014.
"The financing for Phase II is a major milestone in the development of the Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms which, on completion, will be among the largest wind power projects in Canada," said Boralex President and CEO Patrick Lemaire and Gaz Métro President and CEO Sophie Brochu. "The economic benefits of Phase II, estimated at $14 million, will be in addition to the $117 million generated to date by the project's Phase I in the greater Québec City area," added Mr. Lemaire and Ms. Brochu.
Total financing, amounting to $166.1 million, consists of:
- A $142.4 million construction loan, to be converted into a fixed-rate term loan amortized over a 19.5-year term after the beginning of commercial operations scheduled for December 2014, and
- A short-term bridge financing and a letter of credit facility, totalling $23.7 million, for purposes of financing certain costs incurred during construction that are reimbursable by Hydro-Québec and issuing various letters of credit.
With this financing and given the investments and the commitments undertaken by the partners Boralex, Gaz Métro and Valener, Phase II of the Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms is now fully funded.
The group of lenders consists of Sun Life Financial, KfW IPEX-Bank and Industrial Alliance Insurance and Financial Services Inc.
Construction of Phase II, comprising 28 Enercon turbines, is already underway onsite, involving over 200 workers with a view to building all of the access roads, the wind turbine foundations and most of the power collector systems in 2013. In 2014, work will continue to complete the collector systems, erect the towers, assemble the turbines and install the substation electrical equipment for commissioning scheduled in December 2014.
For more information, please visit the Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms site at: www.seigneuriedebeaupre.com
About the Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms
The Seigneurie de Beaupré Wind Farms, with a total contracted capacity of 365 MW, are as of today the largest wind power project in development in Canada. The first phase of 272 MW (Farms 2 & 3), which is expected to start up in late 2013, and the second phase of 68 MW (Farm 4), which is expected to start operating in late 2014, represents the projects of the Boralex and Gaz Métro|Valener consortium. In addition, the 25 MW Côte-de-Beaupré wind farm built in partnership by Boralex and the Côte-de-Beaupré RCM is expected to start up in 2015.
Boralex is a power producer whose core business is dedicated to the development and the operation of renewable energy power stations. Currently, the Corporation operates an asset base with an installed capacity of almost 500 MW in Canada, the Northeastern United States and France. Boralex is also committed under power development projects, both independently and with Canadian and European partners, to add approximately 550 MW of power that will be put in service between 2013 and 2015. With more than 200 employees, Boralex is known for its diversified expertise and in-depth experience in four power generation types — wind, hydroelectric, thermal and solar. Boralex's shares and convertible debentures are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbols BLX and BLX.DB, respectively. More information is available at www.boralex.com or www.sedar.com.
Certain statements contained in this press release, including those regarding future results and performance, are forward-looking statements based on current expectations. The accuracy of such statements is subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected, including, but not limited to, the general impact of economic conditions, raw material price increases and availability, currency fluctuations, volatility in electricity selling prices, the company's financing capacity, negative changes in general market conditions and regulations affecting the industry, as well as other factors listed in the Company's filings with different securities commissions.
There can be no assurance as to the materialization of the results, performance or achievements as expressed or implied by forward-looking statements. The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. Unless required to do so under applicable securities legislation, Boralex management does not assume any obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect new information, future events or other changes.
About Gaz Métro and Valener
With more than $5 billion in assets, Gaz Métro is a leading energy provider. It is the largest natural gas distribution company in Quebec, where its 10,000 km underground network of pipelines serves 300 municipalities and more than 185,000 customers. Gaz Métro is also present in Vermont, producing electricity and distributing electricity and natural gas to cater to the needs to some 300,000 customers. Gaz Métro is actively involved in the development of innovative, sustainability-oriented energy projects such as the production of wind power, the use of natural gas as a transportation fuel and the development of biomethane as a renewable energy source. Gaz Métro is committed to ensuring the satisfaction of its customers, providing support to businesses, local organizations, families and communities, and meeting the needs of its partners (Gaz Métro inc. and Valener) and employees. www.gazmetro.com
Valener owns an economic interest of approximately 29% in Gaz Métro. Valener therefore has a stake in the energy industry and benefits from Gaz Métro's diversified profile, both in terms of geography and business segment. Valener also owns a 24.5% indirect interest in the wind power projects jointly developed with Gaz Métro and Boralex Inc. on the private lands of Séminaire de Québec. Valener's common shares and preferred shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the "VNR" trading symbol for common shares and under the "VNR.PR.A" symbol for Series A preferred shares. www.valener.com
Certain statements contained in this press release may be forward-looking pursuant to applicable securities laws. Such forward-looking statements reflect the intentions, plans, expectations and opinions of the management (the "Management") of Gaz Métro inc. acting in its capacity as General Partner of Gaz Métro and are based on information currently available to Management and assumptions about future events. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties and other factors outside Valener or Gaz Métro's control. A number of factors could cause actual results of Valener and Gaz Métro to differ materially from the current expectations as expressed in the forward-looking statements.
Although these forward-looking statements are based upon what Management believes to be reasonable assumptions, Valener and Gaz Métro cannot assure investors that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this press release, and Valener and Gaz Métro assume no obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required pursuant to applicable securities laws. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. The complete version of the cautionary note regarding forward-looking statements as well as a description of the relevant assumptions and risk factors likely to affect Valener's and Gaz Métro's actual results are included in the Management's Discussion and Analysis for the year ended September 30, 2012 of Valener and Gaz Métro, and in Valener's disclosure filings. These documents are available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
SOURCE: Boralex Inc.
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