Energy Capital Partners has agreed to sell FirstLight Power Enterprises Inc. to SUEZ Energy North America for a reported $1.9 billion. FirstLight owns and operates 15 power generation plants, primarily storage and traditional hydro facilities in New England.
SUEZ Energy North America (SUEZ Energy) and FirstLight Power Enterprises, Inc. (FirstLight) today announced the signing of an agreement to acquire FirstLight from Energy Capital Partners. FirstLight owns and operates a unique portfolio of 15 power generation plants — primarily pumped storage and traditional hydro facilities — and has a state-of-the-art natural gas peaking facility in advanced development. Together, these 16 facilities have a combined capacity of 1,538 MW in Massachusetts and Connecticut. In addition, FirstLight has various expansion opportunities within its portfolio.
“The FirstLight portfolio offers tremendous scale to SUEZ Energy’s power generation position in the critical New England market as the company’s 16 plants, when combined with our own current assets, will make us the fifth largest generator in New England,” said Zin Smati, president and CEO of SUEZ Energy North America. “Of equal importance are the high quality of the employees and the diversity of FirstLight’s assets by generation type and by location as they are within Massachusetts and Connecticut, the two most populous states in the region.”
“FirstLight will complement SUEZ Energy’s existing group of generating assets in New England and eastern Canada and will solidify our presence in a sizable and growing electricity market,” said Dirk Beeuwsaert, CEO of GDF SUEZ Energy International. “The FirstLight facilities have an excellent operating track record and strategic location. We believe these facilities will make an immediate contribution to the group and are pleased with the company’s growth opportunities.”
“This transaction represents a win-win as it is beneficial to FirstLight’s constituents and enhances an already strong business position for GDF SUEZ in North America,” said Curt Morgan, President and CEO of FirstLight Power Enterprises. “We are very enthusiastic about our business combining with one of the world’s preeminent energy companies.”
New England, with a population of 14 million and 31,000 MW of electric generation capacity, is a core market for SUEZ Energy. The company currently has six renewable and natural-gas-fired power generation assets in the region; retail electricity sales to large commercial and industrial customers; and natural gas sales to nearly every gas utility in New England through its liquefied natural gas (LNG) business.
About SUEZ Energy North America
SUEZ Energy North America, Inc. manages a rnge of energy businesses within the United States, Mexico, and Canada, including electricity generation and cogeneration, natural gas and liquefied natural gas (LNG), asset-based trading and origination, and retail energy sales and related services to commercial and industrial customers. SUEZ Energy North America owns and/or operates a total of 47 power, cogeneration, steam, and chilled-water facilities, including those in construction, representing a capacity of more than 6,382 MW of electricity generation, 6.0 million pounds per hour of steam, and 41,973 tons per hour of chilled water. SUEZ Energy North America’s wholly owned subsidiary, Distrigas of Massachusetts, owns and operates a liquefied natural gas receiving terminal in Everett, Mass., which began operations in 1971 and currently serves most of the gas utilities in New England and key power producers, meeting approximately 20 percent of New England’s annual gas demand. In addition, SUEZ Energy North America has an LNG deepwater port under construction off the coast of Massachusetts and another LNG deepwater port project under development off the coast of Florida.
SUEZ Energy North America is part of the international energy group, GDF SUEZ. For more information, please visit http://www.suezenergyna.com.
About GDF SUEZ
One of the leading energy providers in the world, GDF SUEZ is active across the entire energy value chain, in electricity and natural gas, upstream to downstream. It develops its businesses (energy, energy services and environment) around a responsible-growth model to take up the great challenges: responding to energy needs, ensuring the security of supply, fighting against climate change and maximizing the use of resources. GDF SUEZ relies on diversified supply sources as well as flexible and high-performance power generation in order to provide innovative energy solutions to individuals, cities and businesses. The Group employs 196,500 people worldwide and achieved revenues of euro 74,3 billion in 2007. GDF SUEZ is listed on the Brussels, Luxembourg and Paris stock exchanges. For more information, please visit http://www.gdfsuez.com.
About FirstLight Power Enterprises
FirstLight Power Enterprises, Inc., an Energy Capital Partners portfolio company, is a premier New England-based power generating company. FirstLight’s assets include the Northfield Mountain pumped-hydro storage facility located in Northfield, Mass.; the coal-fired Mt. Tom Station in Holyoke, Mass.; and 13 additional predominantly hydro facilities along the Connecticut, Housatonic, Shetucket and Quinebag Rivers in Conn. and Mass. FirstLight is also developing a gas-fired peaking plant in Waterbury, Conn. and other power projects to serve Conn, and Mass. FirstLight has 235 employees. For additional information, go to http://www.FirstLightPower.com.
About Energy Capital Partners
Energy Capital Partners is a private equity firm dedicated to investing in the power generation, midstream gas, renewable and electric transmission sectors of North America’s energy infrastructure. The firm’s management has substantial experience leading successful energy companies and energy infrastructure investments. ECP has offices in Short Hills, N.J., and San Diego, Calif. For more information, visit http://www.ecpartners.com.