United States

United States

Wind Wire: Retaining interest

Schneider Power and its joint venture partner, Land's End Corporation, have sold Grand Valley Wind Farms to Greta Energy.

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Schneider, a wind power developer based in Toronto, has retained a 10% and a 20% interest in the cash flows of the Grand Valley project's 22 MW first phase and 28 MW second phase, respectively, and can earn fees of up to a total of C$5.2 million for reaching a predetermined series of milestones. Greta Energy, also based in Toronto but with wind projects currently under development in Russia, Estonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Vietnam, will be responsible for financing and constructing the projects. Schneider purchased Grand Valley in May 2009 from financially troubled EarthFirst Canada, which filed for court protection from creditors last November and is currently in the process of winding up its operations.

The financial advisory firm managing the court-ordered sale of SkyPower Corporation's development business and its turbine inventory expects to see any transactions resulting from the process finalised by November. SkyPower, a renewable energy developer based in Toronto, was granted court protection from creditors in August after it was unable to meet its debt obligations following the bankruptcy of its principal shareholder, Lehman Brothers (Windpower Monthly, September 2009). SkyPower engaged Marathon Capital, a privately held investment bank headquartered in Illinois, to assist in a quick sale of its assets. Marathon's CEO Ted Brandt says his company cast a net as wide as possible in contacting more than 250 potential bidders. Brandt says that interest in both SkyPower and the turbines, which are being sold separately, is strong. The sales process for the company itself allows bidders to make offers on all of SkyPower's business and operations or any combination of its major parts, including operating wind and solar assets, its wind development pipeline or its solar project pipeline. Companies looking for turbines can make a bid for any or all of the 134 GE Energy 1.5 MW machines SkyPower has in storage.

Vermont-based Northern Power Systems is in the process of installing three of its 100 kW turbines in Ramea, an island community of about 700 people located six kilometres off the south-west coast of Newfoundland. The turbines will be used as part of Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro's five-year research project designed to integrate wind power with hydrogen and diesel generation to provide cleaner electricity to remote communities. The project is part of what the company calls its expanded presence in Canada, where it recently completed installation of a 100 kW turbine at the wastewater treatment plant in Kensington, Prince Edward Island. The turbine will completely power the plant at an estimated cost saving of C$50,000 a year. Another unit installed at a supermarket in Porters Lake, Nova Scotia, supplies 25% of the store's electricity needs.

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