BURLINGTON, Mass. and MONTRÉAL, Québec – September 13, 2023 – FirstLight Power (FirstLight), a leading clean power producer, developer, and energy storage company, today announced that it has finalized an agreement to acquire Hydromega Services Inc. (Hydroméga), including ownership interest in five hydropower generating stations in Québec and five additional hydropower generating stations in Northeastern Ontario. In addition, FirstLight will add Hydroméga’s clean energy development pipeline that includes over 2 gigawatts (GW) of wind, solar, storage, and hydroelectric projects, doubling FirstLight’s development pipeline to approximately 4 GW in the United States and Canada. The transaction is expected to close in Q4 2023 and is subject to customary closing conditions.
Following the recent integration of H2O Power, the addition of Hydroméga’s operating assets will give FirstLight a combined operating capacity of over 200 MW in Québec and Ontario. Hydroméga’s operating assets provide clean, reliable power to those Provinces, and the projects include ownership participation by four First Nations, providing long term benefits to those indigenous communities. By expanding its presence in the Canadian market, FirstLight is well-positioned to further accelerate the company’s growth across North America by advancing Hydroméga’s diversified renewable energy development pipeline, including over 1,000 MW of wind development projects in Québec and over 1,000 MW of battery storage development projects in Ontario. FirstLight will also welcome Hydroméga’s employees into its growing team.
“The strategic acquisition of the Hydroméga platform continues an exciting and transformational period for FirstLight,” said Alicia Barton, President and CEO of FirstLight. “By adding Hydroméga’s development capabilities and operational assets to FirstLight’s existing diversified renewables and energy storage portfolio, we will position ourselves for even greater growth in the years ahead as we pursue our mission to accelerate the decarbonization of the electric grid by building, operating and integrating renewable energy and storage to meet the world’s growing clean energy needs. We look forward to working with the talented team at Hydroméga and their First Nations and local government partners to deliver clean, reliable power to the communities of Québec, Ontario and beyond.”
A pioneer in Canadian renewable energy production and development, Hydroméga has been originating, developing, implementing, and operating clean electricity production facilities in Québec for over 36 years and for 20 years in Ontario. In 1987, the company was the first independent power producer to operate hydroelectric facilities in Québec and was also one of the first wind developers in the province, having successfully originated 1,000+ MW, representing more than 25 percent of the installed wind power capacity in Québec.
“As an early leader in Canada’s renewable energy sector, we are proud to join forces with FirstLight to accelerate the development of our diversified clean energy portfolio to fight climate change and increase access to renewable power in our current target markets, Québec, Ontario and beyond,” said Stéphane Boyer, CEO of Hydroméga. “As a leading independent clean power provider, we have always strived to build partnerships with local communities and organizations committed to the development of their region’s renewable power potential, and we are proud of the meaningful partnerships that have been established with local governments for over two decades. Given its track record of managing clean energy assets and natural resources in harmony with the environment, it is clear that FirstLight shares our values, so joining forces with them makes sense on many levels.”
“FirstLight understands and has a deep respect for Hydroméga’s Québec and Canadian heritage, which has been a key component of Hydroméga’s historic success and will remain an important factor in the future,” said Jacky Cerceau, President and co-owner of Hydroméga. “Philip and I are pleased to see that the Hydroméga family will transition seamlessly with FirstLight as new owners with significant financial and operational resources to continue Hydroméga’s exciting growth.”
“It is with mixed emotions that Jacky and I pass the Hydroméga torch to FirstLight after a more than 36-year adventure,” said Philip Lawee, co-owner of Hydroméga. “Over the years Hydroméga has developed an impressive Canadian platform of renewable energy assets on which FirstLight intends to further expand. FirstLight will provide Hydroméga with the ability to accelerate its growth and continue its expansion across Canada and North America. Jacky and I are confident that Hydroméga’s new partners will elevate the company to a new level and achieve great success.”
The announcement follows several growth-related initiatives and strategic moves by FirstLight and adds a significant onshore wind development pipeline to FirstLight’s existing development efforts across solar, storage and offshore wind. In addition to the recent integration of H2O Power, FirstLight was part of a successful investment consortium that secured a lease in the NY Bight Offshore Wind auction. The company also completed the acquisitions of two hydroelectric facilities in Western Pennsylvania that expanded the company’s footprint into the PJM and New York electricity market. In addition, FirstLight announced a new partnership in Connecticut to advance new hybrid renewable energy projects at the company’s existing Connecticut properties. FirstLight also announced a strategic partnership with New Leaf Energy (formerly Borrego) to develop new solar and storage generation at existing hydropower facilities in Massachusetts and Connecticut. These collaborations will support the company’s mission to help accelerate the path to a fully decarbonized electric grid in North America. In addition, the company recently executed a number of power purchase agreements with Massachusetts municipal utilities for hydroelectricity from select Massachusetts and Connecticut hydroelectric facilities to support the near-term need for clean electricity to meet interim supply requirements mandated by the climate legislation passed into law in Massachusetts.
TD Securities is acting as financial advisor to Hydroméga in connection with the transaction; Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP is Hydroméga’s legal counsel and KPMG represents Hydroméga as its tax advisor. Blakes, Cassels & Graydon LLP is FirstLight’s legal counsel.