Innergex announces acquisition of five hydro plants in Canada, Chile

Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. recently acquired interests in three hydro plants in British Columbia, Canada, and two in Chile.

In Canada, Innergex acquired Ledcor Power Group Ltd.’s 33.3% interest in Creek Power Inc., which indirectly owns the 25.3-MW Boulder Creek, 7.5-MW Fitzsimmons Creek and 81.4-MW Upper Lillooet River hydro projects, as well as a portfolio of prospective projects. As Innergex already owned the remaining 66.7% share of Creek Power, this makes the company the sole owner of the three above-mentioned hydropower facilities.

“By seizing opportunities such as this, we increase our ownership interest in facilities, improve tax planning and further fuel our growth strategy,” said Michel Letellier, president and chief executive officer of Innergex.

The Chile transaction involves Innergex acquiring, in partnership with Chilean company Energia Llaima, the 140-MW Duqueco hydro project, which includes two hydro facilities.

The 85-MW Peuchen and 55-MW Mampil plants on the Duqueco River were commissioned in 2001. Peuchen has a reservoir with four-hour regulation at full capacity and up to 12-hour regulation at partial capacity. The aggregated annual power generation is expected to reach more than 350,000 MW, and the electricity produced is sold under power purchase agreements at fixed prices until 2020 and on the spot market.

“We are very pleased to finally enter the Chilean market through the acquisition of hydro assets where we can leverage our substantial experience and expertise. With this partnership, we intend to pursue a growth  trajectory in this market and to expand our development platform throughout South America with a focus on high quality renewable energy projects,” Letellier said.

The acquisition is subject to certain regulatory approvals in Chile and to reaching a final partnership agreement between the parties. In addition, Innergex has signed an exclusivity agreement with Energía Llaima for a joint venture partnership to acquire a 50% stake in the company, according to a press release. Upon signing a final partnership agreement, Innergex would own 50% of Energía Llaima for a total commitment of US$110 million (C$140.5 million) to be invested in the next three years. In addition to the investment in the Duqueco project, Innergex will invest an additional US$10 million (C$12.8 million) in Energía Llaima to contribute to its working capital.

Innergex is based in Quebec, Canada, and has interests in 64 generating facilities with total gross installed capacity of 2,886 MW, including 34 hydroelectric facilities.

Energia Llaima also owns a 12-MW run-of-river hydro facility in the San Jose de Maipo district and has two hydro projects in the advanced stage of development: 109-MW Central Frontera and 12-MW Central El Canelo.

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