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MONTREAL, Dec. 21 /CNW Telbec/ - Valener Inc. ("Valener") (TSX: VNR) is pleased to announce today that it acquired a 24.5% indirect interest in the Seigneurie de Beaupré wind power projects located on the private property of the Séminaire de Québec (the "Seigneurie Project") following the exercise of the option granted to it by Gaz Métro Limited Partnership ("Gaz Métro") in the context of its strategic corporate reorganization completed on September 30, 2010. These projects will be developed by Beaupré Éole General Partnership ("Beaupré Éole") and Boralex Inc. (collectively, the "Consortium"). Following the exercise of the option, Beaupré Éole succeeded to Gaz Métro Éole Inc. ("Gaz Métro Éole") within the Consortium. Beaupré Éole is now held by Gaz Métro Éole (51%) and indirectly by Valener (49%).
"We are very pleased with the acquisition by Valener of a 24.5% indirect interest in the Seigneurie Project. To be able to go forward with this acquisition was a material component of the reorganization which led to the creation of Valener and its completion underscores Valener's potential for growth and value creation", declared Mr. Pierre Monahan, Chairman of the Board of Valener.
The purchase price of the interest is approximately $2 million (subject to certain adjustments), being 49% of all the costs incurred to date by Gaz Métro and Gaz Métro Éole, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Gaz Métro, in connection with the Seigneurie Project. Furthermore, Valener will continue, through its approximately 29% interest in Gaz Métro, to benefit from the remaining 25.5% indirect interest that Gaz Métro holds in the Seigneurie Project.
Due to the exercise of the option, Valener assumes guarantees in the amount of approximately $2.3 million representing its proportionate share of the guarantees previously provided by Gaz Métro inc., Gaz Métro's general partner, to Hydro-Québec Distribution and Hydro-Québec TransÉnergie in connection with the Seigneurie Project. Valener could be required to provide additional guarantees at a later date, depending on the progress of the work associated with the contracts. It is expected that, as soon as the financing for the Seigneurie Project will be in place, guarantees will be provided at the project level such that Valener will no longer be required to provide them directly.
Valener is a new publicly listed corporation which holds an economic interest of approximately 29% in Gaz Métro. Valener therefore has a stake in the energy industry and benefits from the diversified profile of Gaz Métro, both geographically and by business segment. Valener also holds a 24.5% indirect interest in the wind power projects jointly developed, directly or indirectly, by Beaupré Éole General Partnership and Boralex Inc. on the private property of the Séminaire de Québec. Valener may also pursue its own development projects and acquisition strategies subject to a non-competition undertaking in favour of Gaz Métro and to applicable limitations under its credit facility. Valener's common shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "VNR". www.valener.com
Cautionary note regarding forward-looking statements
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 of Gaz Métro inc., in its capacity as general partner of Gaz Métro, acting as manager of Valener (the "Manager's Management") pursuant to an administration and management support agreement entered into between Valener and Gaz Métro on September 30, 2010, and are based on information currently available to the Manager's Management and assumptions about future events. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties and other factors outside the control of the Manager's Management. A number of factors could cause actual results of Gaz Métro and Valener 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, the Manager's Management 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 the Manager's Management assumes 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 risk factors likely to affect Gaz Métro's and Valener's actual results are included in the Annual Management's Discussion and Analysis of Valener dated November 18, 2010. This document is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com and on Valener's website at www.valener.com
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