Juhl Energy is purchasing two Iowa wind farms. The wind farms are located in North Central Iowa outside the towns of Manley and Kensett and utilize GE turbines. Operating since November 2011, combined nameplate capacity is 3.24 megawatts.
“This transaction underscores our ongoing commitment to building our residual, independent power production business made up of wind farms today and – we hope – other forms of renewable energy in the future,” said John Mitola, president of Juhl Energy. “We believe that building our asset ownership and operating division, with its predictable revenue and cash flow, is the foundation for the ongoing strength of our company. These two Iowa projects are representative of the thousands of projects under 50 MWs –the market sector where Juhl stands head and shoulders above others in its ability to own, operate and maintain such assets.”
The wind turbines are installed on private farmland approximately 10 miles apart from each other. Juhl Renewable Assets, Inc., Juhl Energy’s wholly-owned subsidiary, will purchase both projects by acquiring 100 percent of the membership interests held by the existing owners for $2.0 million and the assumption of debt in place at the project level. The $2.0 million required to close on the Iowa projects will be raised through JRAI’s 9.0 percent Series A Preferred equity offering to individual accredited investors and qualifying institutions that have an existing relationship with the Company.
Mitola said the projects are being financed with bank debt and their Juhl Renewable Assest preferred stock- only available to current accredited stockholders. He added that similar to other “yieldcos” their stock is paying 9 percent yield annual since inception. After the close of the Iowa projects the JRAI division will own and operate five wind projects totaling approximately 25 megawatts.
“We maintain our long-term goal of building ownership capacity and hope to progress to management’s stated goal of up to 200 megawatts – which would represent energy production assets with an initial installed cost of approximately $400 million,” Mitola added. “We believe we can get there by adding small projects alongside medium sized projects one step at a time over the next few years.”
“To put our platform of accumulating energy assets in perspective, currently there are over 6,000 MWs of wind farms with nameplate capacity of less than 50 MW operating in North America. As a result, we believe our goals for additional asset acquisitions are reasonable given Juhl’s presence in wind power industry and our position in the smaller wind space,” Mitola concluded.
The company created its JRAI Preferred Stock as a direct result of significant interest. The stock allows investment directly into renewable energy projects. Mitola believes with the creation of their JRAI Preferred equity vehicle, they will continue to prove the company can secure assets quickly with a competitive cost of capital and provide investors a solid annual yield.