Wind energy company Pattern blows past IPO price in debut: Reuters

Sept 27 (Reuters) – Shares of Pattern Energy Group Inc rose 10 percent in their debut, as the recent rally in renewable energy stocks rubbed off on the first-ever public offering of a U.S. wind farm operator.

Pattern’s IPO comes almost three years after First Wind Holdings Inc yanked its offering in November 2010 after investors balked at an unprofitable company with aggressive expansion plans.

However, Pattern has solid cash flow and has been largely profitable, factors that may have helped the company get a better pricing and drive the stock up on debut.

The company raised $352 million after pricing its offering at $22 per share, just above its expected price range of $19-$21. Pattern sold 16 million shares.

San Francisco, California-based Pattern owns and operates eight wind power projects in the United States, Canada and Chile, with a total power-generation capacity of 1,041 MW.

Pattern’s net profit rose to $29.14 million for the first six months of 2013, from $6.44 million a year earlier. Revenue rose 62 percent to $102.54 million.

The company is expected to benefit from the extension of a critical tax credit by the U.S. Congress in January.

Siemens AG, the world’s No.3 maker of wind turbines, said last month that it expects the global wind power market to more than quadruple by 2030, lifted by strong growth in Asia.

Pattern Energy’s shares opened at $24.10 and touched a high of $24.30, valuing the company at $1.24 billion. Nearly 8 million shares changed hands by 12:30 p.m. ET, making it one of the most heavily traded stocks on the Nasdaq on Friday.

“Based on this success, I would anticipate other such filings coming shortly,” founder, John Fitzgibbon said.

Pattern Energy is headed by Mike Garland, who led the North American infrastructure group of investment and advisory company Babcock & Brown that was liquidated after the financial crisis.

Private equity firm Riverstone Holdings bought Babcock’s wind energy business and named it Pattern Energy Group LP, the parent company of the listed entity.

BMO Capital Markets, RBC Capital Markets and Morgan Stanley are the underwriters for the IPO.

Pattern Energy shares were up 7 percent at $23.45 in afternoon trade on the Nasdaq.

The S&P Global Clean Energy Index has jumped 40 percent from April, compared to an 8 percent rise in the broader S&P 500.

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