Major Renewable Energy Developer EDF Expands into Community Wind, Acquires OwnEnergy

Sunedison acquired First Wind in November 2014 and today EDF Renewable Energy (EDF RE) is announcing that it has snapped up OwnEnergy, a developer of mid-sized wind projects. The transaction encompasses 100 percent of OwnEnergy’s assets, including its pipeline of future wind projects.

Since its founding in 2007, OwnEnergy has built partnerships with individuals, companies and communities with one simple goal: to create a platform for local clean energy entrepreneurs to lead the development of renewable energy projects. Today, the 20-person team has eight wind projects either in a construction or operating phase, representing 329 megawatts (MW) of developed wind energy assets sold to third parties. In addition, the company has built a portfolio of development assets through its local partner business model.

“We are thrilled to welcome the OwnEnergy team to the EDF Renewable Energy family. We worked collaboratively during the due diligence to ensure that our respective cultures and customer-oriented focus would fully align,” said Tristan Grimbert, CEO and President of EDF RE. “OwnEnergy’s business model taps into the entrepreneurial spirit of farmers, ranchers and other community leaders across the country with a focus on the mid-size market of off-takers. Their community partner approach will continue under the EDF Renewable Energy brand.”

Jacob Susman, founder and CEO of OwnEnergy said that EDF RE is acquiring the company “for the same reason that brand name corporations are buying our clean power,” adding that OwnEnergy “puts the community first.”

In 2011 OwnEnergy closed a transaction with NextEra Energy Resources to acquire, construct and operate the Blackwell Wind Farm, a community wind project in Oklahoma. In the community wind model, the community retains ownership interest of a wind farm with profits returning to the local investors. Power from the Blackwell Wind Farm supplies Oklahoma State University.

EDF Renewable Energy is one of the largest renewable energy developers in North America with 6 gigawatts (GW) of wind, solar, biomass, biogas, and storage projects developed and an installed capacity of 3.2 GW.  In 2012 EDF RE acquired solar project developer enXco, developer of the Pocono Raceway Solar project, which was the 2011 Reader’s Choice Project of the Year.

Marathon Capital served as exclusive financial advisor to OwnEnergy.

Lead image: Blackwell Wind Energy Center. Credit: NextEra.

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