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Growth Strategy

Strategic Plan and Financial Objectives for 2023

On June 18, 2019, Boralex management announced the strategic plan that will guide us to achieve the financial objectives set for 2023. The plan:

  • Builds on our solid expertise and experience in sectors with high growth potential.
  • Includes complementary initiatives to diversify and optimize our operations and revenue sources.
  • Sets out 4 main directions and 3 financial objectives.
  • Is based on an in-depth analysis of the market and trends in the renewable energy sector.
  • Reflects the view that our industry is undergoing a profound and rapid transformation, driven mainly by technological innovations.

STRATEGIC PLAN AT A GLANCE

We will successfully implement our strategic plan and achieve our financial objectives by means of the following:

  • Solid expertise in the development of small and midsize projects, which is key to our ability to seize opportunities in increasingly competitive markets, particularly in solar power.
  • Strict financial discipline, targeting projects and acquisitions that meet specific growth and synergy criteria in order to create value and generate returns in line with shareholder expectations. We plan to carry out more projects through partnerships while retaining control and management of operations to generate additional.
  • Maintaining the approach that has contributed to our success, which is to establish predictable cash flows through long-term, indexed, fixed price energy sales contracts. By 2023, we expect 96% of our revenues to come from such contracts, with an expected weighted average remaining term of about 11 years.

Development Outlook (in MW)

We are implementing our strategic plan based on the growth potential in the markets in which we operate. The table below provides an overview of the installed-capacity potential of our target geographic markets in Europe and North America.

Targeted market potential and pipeline (in MW)

Summary:

  • The wind power segment is the top growth vector, accounting for 88% of our total installed capacity as at December 31, 2019.
  • Our analyses indicate that wind power has a total market potential of 10,550 MW for the Corporation, which has a total of 2,050 MW in the pipeline at various stages of development in this segment.
  • The potential market for solar power is about 20,000 MW. We plan to substantially strengthen our presence; the current pipeline in this segment totals 450 MW.

The Growth Path chart below shows the projects that have obtained all the authorizations required for launching construction:

Growth Path

Developments by Strategic Direction

Growth

We will continue to strengthen our presence in markets where we are already active and that also have high potential for growth in renewable energy.

Europe

  • The wind power segment in Europe is a growth driver for Boralex, as it has a potential target market of 9,500 MW given the energy transition now underway, primarily in France.
  • In France, our pipeline at various stages of development totals over 1,000 MW. Given our long-term presence and extensive knowledge of this market, we are well positioned to capitalize on the favourable environment for growth in renewable energy, especially in the wind power segment.
  • We are active participants in tenders scheduled through to the end of 2020 for building onshore wind farms with a total installed capacity of 3,400 MW; each contract has a 20-year term.
  • Infinergy and Boralex announced the execution of a 50-50 joint venture agreement in October 2017, aimed at developing a pipeline of onshore wind projects, including the Limekiln Wind Farm project, essentially located in Scotland for a total estimated capacity of 325 MW. The joint venture comprises a pipeline of 10 wind projects varying from 6 to 80 MW and would allow Boralex to acquire or resell the projects over the coming years. The projects are at different stages of development, from early stage to being on the verge of full authorization.

North America

  • In wind power, we are targeting a potential market of 1,050 MW.
  • Canada has the most opportunities, with large-scale wind power projects at an advanced stage, awaiting a more favourable political and energy environment.

Diversification

We will be seeking further diversification in our operations by targeting the solar power and energy storage sectors.

Europe

  • Europe is the region with the greatest opportunities for solar power generation; we are focusing our efforts on a potential market totalling 11,000 MW.
  • We plan to ramp up development of our operations in the solar power segment in France by leveraging our existing facilities to strengthen our expertise in this sector.

North America

  • We are targeting a potential market of some 9,000 MW. We plan to put our resources to work by developing a set of small and midsize solar power sites in the Northeastern U.S., an area requiring special expertise and where competition is less intense.
  • We will initially focus on the high potential New York State market and plan to open an office in New York and hire staff to complement the Canada development team.
  • We also intend to capitalize on the significant cost reductions in battery storage technology to gradually roll out an energy storage service to meet the emerging needs of power distribution grids.
    This service will allow us to:
    • Facilitate the insertion of renewable energies, ensuring grid stability.
    • Contribute to the integration of solar power by shifting the distribution of excess electricity produced during the day to periods (such as evenings) with high demand.
    • Provide the energy needed during peak consumption or supply system failures.
    • Improve the reliability and flexibility of the power grid while limiting spending on new infrastructure such as stations or lines.
  • We’re making an initial foray into this sector because we consider storage a complementary option that will promote and accelerate the widespread use of renewable energy.

Customers

We plan to implement new business models to serve a broader customer base. This will be achieved by:

  • Signing energy sales contracts directly with electricity-consuming corporations
  • Gradually adding complementary services for energy transmission networks and large-scale power users

Optimization

Two main components:

  1. Consider the potential sale of minority interests in future energy assets to ensure an optimal allocation of capital.
  2. Increase synergies within the company and ensure optimal use of existing resources and assets:
    • Through initiatives to reduce maintenance or financing costs
    • Or through the repowering of existing equipment

Two projects underway demonstrate our approach to the optimal use of resources:

  • The repowering project for the Cham Longe I wind farm in France: installed capacity at this facility will go from 17 MW to 35 MW after wind turbines are replaced by more efficient equipment, which should add an additional €4 million to annual EBITDA(A).
  • Repowering of the Buckingham hydroelectric power station in Québec: replacement of a number of turbines doubled the installed capacity to 20 MW, which adds about $5 million to the Corporation’s annual EBITDA(A). The new turbines were commissioned on October 17, 2019.

Financial objectives – current status:

To ensure that implementation of the strategic plan delivers disciplined growth and creates value for shareholders, Boralex management tracks three criteria as financial objectives.

Discretionary cash flows

As at December 31, 2019, discretionary cash flows amounted to $120 million on a rolling 12-month basis. In 2019, discretionary cash flows more than doubled from $59 million in 2018.

This $61 million increase in discretionary cash flows was driven essentially by the increase in cash flows from operations resulting from improved fiscal 2019 results of the wind and hydroelectric power segments, as well as the contribution of facilities acquired and commissioned. This increase was partly offset by the $26 million rise in payments on non-current debt related to projects resulting from expansion of the operating base.

*See the Non-IFRS Measure section of the latest quarterly report.

Dividend

As at December 31, 2019, the dividend paid to shareholders represented a payout ratio of 50% on a rolling 12-month basis. With the improvement in discretionary cash flows since the beginning of the current fiscal year, the dividend payout ratio is now closer to the target ratio of 40% to 60%.

*See the Non-IFRS Measure section of the latest quarterly report.

Net installed capacity

As at December 31, 2019, Boralex’s net installed capacity was 2,040 MW.