Stronger Operating and Financial Results Year-to-date in 2022 and Continued Strength in European Power Prices Result in an Upward Revision to the Company's Full-Year Financial Guidance
TORONTO, Aug. 11, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Northland Power Inc. ("Northland" or the "Company") (TSX: NPI) today reported financial results for the three and six months ended June 30, 2022. All dollar amounts set out herein are in thousands of Canadian dollars, unless otherwise stated.
"Our financial and operating performance in the second quarter has been stronger than expected and as a result, we are revising our 2022 full year financial guidance upwards this quarter due largely to higher market prices in Europe and solid operational performance," said Mike Crawley, Northland's President and Chief Executive Officer. "Energy security is now a top priority in Europe. We are pleased to be part of the solution as our 1.2GW Baltic Power project development advances and we added another 225MW project, Godewind, to our now over 1.5GW Nordsee Offshore Wind Cluster project. We continue to explore other ways to create additional renewable power capacity in Europe. With our Asian development activities, we achieved an important milestone at our Hai Long Offshore Wind project in Taiwan subsequent to the quarter-end. The project signed a 20-year corporate offtake agreement for production from the Hai Long 2B and 3A projects and commenced bank launch to secure long-term non-recourse funding as the project progresses towards financial close targeted for 2022. In North America, our New York Onshore Wind projects are progressing as planned with the first turbines being erected at the Bluestone project in July and Ball Hill getting ready to receive first turbines in September."
Second Quarter Highlights
Sales, gross profit and net income, as reported under IFRS, include consolidated results of entities not wholly owned by Northland, whereas non-IFRS financial measures include Northland's proportionate ownership interest.
|Summary of Consolidated Results|
|(in thousands of dollars, except per share amounts)||Three months ended June 30,||Six months ended June 30,|
|Net income (loss)||267,866||(6,370||)||555,446||145,019|
|Adjusted EBITDA (a non-IFRS measure)||335,192||202,883||755,341||562,687|
|Cash provided by operating activities||312,337||361,076||758,956||769,530|
|Adjusted Free Cash Flow (a non-IFRS measure)||162,010||22,401||353,995||169,690|
|Free Cash Flow (a non-IFRS measure)||145,543||5,545||319,918||139,993|
|Cash dividends paid||48,442||43,386||95,835||83,339|
|Total dividends declared (1)||$||69,957||$||67,642||$||138,454||$||128,382|
|Weighted average number of shares - basic (000s)||232,321||220,182||230,019||211,284|
|Net income (loss) - basic||$||1.01||$||(0.06||)||$||2.01||$||0.40|
|Adjusted Free Cash Flow - basic (a non-IFRS measure)||$||0.70||$||0.10||$||1.54||$||0.80|
|Free Cash Flow - basic (a non-IFRS measure)||$||0.63||$||0.03||$||1.39||$||0.66|
|Total dividends declared||$||0.30||$||0.30||$||0.60||$||0.60|
|Electricity production in gigawatt hours (GWh)||2,082||1,533||5,003||4,114|
|(1) Represents total dividends paid to common shareholders including dividends in cash or in shares under the DRIP.|
Significant Events and Updates
Second Quarter Results Summary
Offshore wind facilities
Electricity production increased 15% or 103GWh compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to higher wind resource and fewer unpaid curtailments related to negative prices in Germany, partially offset by higher uncompensated grid outages at the German facilities.
Sales of $246 million increased 20% or $41 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to higher market prices at our offshore wind facilities, most notably at our Gemini facility and higher production across all facilities. The continued strength in energy prices across Europe resulted in the APX exceeding the SDE for Gemini, allowing for the realization of $21 million of higher revenues in the quarter. These higher revenues were partially offset by foreign exchange rate fluctuations, which reduced sales by $22 million compared to the same quarter of 2021. Adjusted Free Cash Flow and Free Cash Flow are largely hedged and were therefore unaffected by foreign exchange movements. The final revenues realized for 2022 will depend on the average APX market price over the course of the year, which is currently estimated at ?266/MWh as at June 30, 2022, excluding P&I costs.
Adjusted EBITDA of $141 million increased 24% or $28 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to higher wind resource across all three facilities, higher APX at Gemini and fewer unpaid curtailments related to negative prices in Germany, partially offset by higher uncompensated outages at the German facilities and foreign exchange rate fluctuations.
An important indicator for the offshore wind facilities is the historical average of the power production of each offshore wind facility, where available. The following table summarizes actual electricity production and the historical average, high and low for the applicable operating periods of each offshore facility:
|Three months ended June 30,||2022 (1)||2021 (1)||Historical|
|Electricity production (GWh)|
|(1) Includes GWh produced and attributed to paid curtailments.|
|(2) Represents the average historical power production for the period since the commencement of commercial operation of the respective facility (2017 for Gemini and Nordsee One and 2020 for Deutsche Bucht) and excludes unpaid curtailments.|
Onshore renewable facilities
Electricity production was 96% or 285GWh higher than the same quarter of 2021 due to the contribution from the Spanish portfolio acquired in August 2021 and higher production from the Canadian onshore wind facilities partially offset by lower solar resource.
Sales of $131 million were 125% or $73 million higher than the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to the contribution from the Spanish portfolio and taking into account the 150% increase in 2022 posted pool prices in the current regulatory period in Spain. These regulatory amendments, effective retrospectively from January 1, 2022, are pending governmental approval and are expected to result in higher merchant revenue exposure for 2022 as a result of an increase in the posted pool price from ?49/MWh to ?122/MWh, thus allowing generation facilities to realize higher sales in the current year.
Adjusted EBITDA of $107 million was higher than the same quarter of 2021. Excluding the contribution from the Spanish portfolio, production, sales and Adjusted EBITDA in the second quarter would have been 11%, 4% and 5% higher, respectively, compared to the same quarter of 2021, primarily due to a higher wind resource at the Canadian wind facilities, partially offset by lower solar resource.
Efficient natural gas facilities
Electricity production increased 30% or 161GWh compared to the same quarter of 2021 due to the effect of a planned maintenance outage last year at North Battleford and partially offset by the effect of Kirkland Lake operating under an enhanced dispatch contract (EDC) compared to a baseload PPA for the same periods last year.
Sales and Adjusted EBITDA of $103 million and $88 million, respectively, increased 24% or $20 million and 74% or $38 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to higher production at North Battleford and Thorold and also from Kirkland Lake's management fee. The increases were partially offset by the sale of Iroquois Falls.
Sales and Adjusted EBITDA of $70 million and $29 million, respectively, increased 33% or $18 million and 38% or $8 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 largely due to rate escalations, driven by a producer price index increases, positively affecting EBSA's 2022 financial performance.
In December 2021, Northland restructured and upsized EBSA's long-term, non-recourse financing (the "EBSA Facility"), resulting in $84 million of incremental cash proceeds to Northland, net of closing costs. The upsizing of the EBSA Facility was completed on the basis of growth in EBSA's projected EBITDA growth for 2022, based on increases in the rate base. Net upsizing proceeds, in excess of EBSA's expansionary capital expenditure needs, of $17 million are included in Adjusted Free Cash Flow and Free Cash Flow for the first six months of 2022.
Consolidated statement of income (loss)
General and administrative (G&A) costs of $20 million in the second quarter increased 34% or $5 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to higher personnel and other costs supporting Northland's global growth, in line with management's expectations.
Development costs of $15 million are in line with the same quarter of 2021.
Net finance costs of $77 million in the second quarter increased 3% or $2 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to an increase in debt associated with the acquisition of the Spanish portfolio, partially offset by the scheduled repayments on facility-level loans.
Fair value gain on derivative contracts was $235 million in the second quarter primarily due to net movement in the fair value of derivatives related to commodity, interest rates and foreign exchange contracts.
Foreign exchange loss of $35 million in the second quarter was primarily due to unrealized losses from fluctuations in the closing foreign exchange rates.
Net income of $268 million in the second quarter increased by $274 million compared to the same quarter of 2021 primarily due to the factors described above, partially offset by $91 million higher tax expense.
|Three months ended June 30,||Six months ended June 30,|
|Net income (loss)||$||267,866||$||(6,370||)||$||555,446||$||145,019|
|Finance costs, net||77,483||75,530||159,240||162,620|
|Gemini interest income||3,749||4,025||7,456||8,006|
|Share of joint venture project development costs||2,639||(3,102||)||5,434||(3,857||)|
|Provision for (recovery of) income taxes||85,708||(5,780||)||186,262||46,485|
|Depreciation of property, plant and equipment||144,614||145,137||292,029||290,437|
|Amortization of contracts and intangible assets||15,545||9,703||25,603||19,643|
|Fair value (gain) loss on derivative contracts||(239,730||)||13,077||(373,175||)||(41,906||)|
|Foreign exchange (gain) loss||34,575||16,365||66,949||46,031|
|Elimination of non-controlling interests||(40,964||)||(46,930||)||(141,818||)||(141,432||)|
|Finance lease (lessor)||(1,614||)||(2,408||)||(3,278||)||(4,263||)|
Adjusted EBITDA of $335 million in the second quarter, increased 65% or $132 million compared to the same quarter of 2021. The significant factors increasing Adjusted EBITDA include:
The factors partially offsetting the increase in Adjusted EBITDA include:
Adjusted Free Cash Flow and Free Cash Flow
|Three months ended June 30,||Six months ended June 30,|
|Cash provided by operating activities||$||312,337||$||361,076||$||758,956||$||769,530|
|Net change in non-cash working capital balances related to operations||25,630||(87,077||)||40,992||(102,126||)|
|Non-expansionary capital expenditures||(18,480||)||(8,656||)||(31,310||)||(17,614||)|
|Restricted funding for major maintenance, debt and decommissioning reserves||(6,004||)||(7,638||)||(11,098||)||(9,171||)|
|Scheduled principal repayments on facility debt||(307,944||)||(300,713||)||(348,385||)||(334,523||)|
|Funds set aside (utilized) for scheduled principal repayments||125,152||135,579||(16,926||)||3,910|
|Preferred share dividends||(2,741||)||(2,698||)||(5,441||)||(5,397||)|
|Consolidation of non-controlling interests||4,644||2,527||(41,804||)||(39,213||)|
|Investment income (1)||4,222||5,098||8,398||10,263|
|Proceeds under NER300 and warranty settlement at Nordsee One||21,164||9,343||38,876||17,109|
|Free Cash Flow||$||145,543||$||5,545||$||319,918||$||139,993|
|Add back: Growth expenditures||16,467||16,856||34,077||29,697|
|Adjusted Free Cash Flow||$||162,010||$||22,401||$||353,995||$||169,690|
|(1) Investment income includes Gemini interest income.|
|(2) Other mainly includes net proceeds from sale of two efficient natural gas facilities, EBSA refinancing, effect of foreign exchange rate hedges, Nordsee One interest on shareholder loans, equity accounting, acquisition costs and non-cash expenses adjusted in working capital excluded from Free Cash Flow in the period.|
Adjusted Free Cash Flow of $162 million for the three months ended June 30, 2022, was 623% or $140 million higher than the same quarter of 2021.
The significant factors increasing Adjusted Free Cash Flow were:
The factor partially offsetting the increase in Adjusted Free Cash Flow was:
Free Cash Flow, which includes growth expenditures, totaled $146 million for the three months ended June 30, 2022, and was $140 million higher than the same quarter of 2021 due to the same factors as Adjusted Free Cash Flow.
The following table reconciles Adjusted EBITDA to Adjusted Free Cash Flow.
|Three months ended June 30,||Six months ended June 30,|
|Scheduled debt repayments||(147,853||)||(127,567||)||(295,554||)||(256,196||)|
|Income taxes paid||(32,725||)||(5,197||)||(89,109||)||(35,836||)|
|Non-expansionary capital expenditure||(15,749||)||(7,700||)||(26,668||)||(16,299||)|
|Utilization (funding) of maintenance and decommissioning reserves||(5,574||)||(7,162||)||(10,230||)||(8,235||)|
|Lease payments, including principal and interest||(116||)||(1,825||)||(3,123||)||(4,050||)|
|Foreign exchange hedge gain (loss)||32,929||9,737||48,091||12,181|
|Proceeds under NER300 and warranty settlement at Nordsee One||17,989||7,942||33,044||14,543|
|EBSA Refinancing proceeds, net of growth capital expenditures||3,953||?||16,777||?|
|Free Cash Flow||$||145,543||$||5,545||$||319,918||$||139,993|
|Add Back: Growth expenditures||16,467||16,856||34,077||29,697|
|Adjusted Free Cash Flow||$||162,010||$||22,401||$||353,995||$||169,690|
|(1) Other mainly includes Gemini interest income, net proceeds from sale of two efficient natural gas facilities, shareholder loan to Kirkland Lake and interest received on third-party loans to partners.|
Refer to Northland's 2021 Annual Report for additional information on sources of liquidity in addition to Adjusted Free Cash Flow.
2022 Financial Outlook
With the strong financial performance experienced through the first six months of the year, including the realized gains from the sale of two of the Company's efficient natural gas assets, along with the continued strength in European power prices, management is revising its stated financial guidance for 2022, for Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Free Cash Flow, and Free Cash Flow per share.
For 2022, Adjusted EBITDA is now expected to be in a range of $1.25 billion to $1.35 billion ($1.15 billion to $1.25 billion previously), Adjusted Free Cash Flow per share is now expected to be in the range of $1.85 to $2.05 ($1.65 to $1.85 previously) and Free Cash Flow per share is now expected to be in the range of $1.40 to $1.60 ($1.20 to $1.40 previously).
These ranges factor in higher expected debt repayments on certain European facilities, pending successful completion of refinancings, that are currently in progress and targeted to be completed later in 2022. The revised guidance ranges may be subject to further upside should power prices in Europe continue to trade at elevated levels for the remainder of 2022, particularly as it relates to Northland's offshore wind facilities.
Northland's financial position continues to be strong, and the Company remains well positioned to fund its growth objectives. Northland expects to be able to refinance any material maturities due in the next five years, moreover, over 95% of total debt is non-recourse to the Company. Northland also has access to a $807 million undrawn corporate revolving credit facility with approximately $1.0 billion of total available liquidity as of August 11, 2022, which can be utilized to fund growth projects that ultimately advance to financial close. Borrowings under the credit facilities are revolving, such that they are ultimately repaid from project financings at financial close, corporate and/or project-level financing optimizations and/or sell downs at or before financial close.
Northland's Adjusted Free Cash Flow finances growth expenditures, and corporate costs that support growth and new initiatives. With a focus on its BBB (Stable) credit rating from S&P and Fitch, Northland considers it preferable to employ low-cost corporate credit to fund investments in its capitalized growth projects, most of which are targeted for financial close in either 2022 or 2023. To the extent there is excess Adjusted Free Cash Flow generated by the Company through financial and operational outperformance, these additional cash flows will be used fund capitalized growth projects, thereby reducing the need for corporate debt or equity funding.
Northland also intends to execute a selective sell-down strategy of partial interests of certain of its development projects on or before financial close to allow the Company to: (i) manage jurisdictional exposures, (ii) crystallize some development profit prior to construction as a result of the de-risking of the project; (iii) enhance our Adjusted Free Cash Flow and liquidity position; and (iv) increase project returns, amongst other considerations. The Company will assess each opportunity individually and intends to remain a long-term owner in the renewable projects it develops. The Company's first notable development asset sell-down may occur as early as 2022, pending satisfactory terms to Northland.
The following table summarizes Northland's additional sources of liquidity that have been sourced by management:
|For the year to date period ended||June 30, 2022||December 31, 2021|
|Dividend Reinvestment Program (DRIP)||$||41,757||$||88,975|
|Proceeds from asset optimizations, debt service reserves and net proceeds from asset sales (1)||54,441||197,282|
|Total Liquidity Generated Before Equity Issuances||$||96,198||$||286,257|
|Equity issuances (net proceeds) (2)||294,683||950,421|
|Total Liquidity Generated After Equity Issuances||$||390,881||$||1,236,678|
|(1) 2021 figure includes EBSA refinancing and Canadian credit facility upsizing.|
|(2) 2022 net proceeds resulting from activity under the ATM program.|
Pauline Alimchandani, Northland's Chief Financial Officer said, "we continue to take steps to further strengthen Northland's financial position and enhance our available capital and liquidity. Through the execution of optimization activities across our operating portfolio, we have been able to generate significant liquidity and improve our financial flexibility to help fund our growth initiatives. During the first six months of the year, we have raised $54 million of proceeds through asset and financing optimizations. Including net proceeds raised from our equity programs, we have raised nearly $400 million, thereby enhancing our financial flexibility to fund our projects expected to achieve financial close. In addition, we continue to evaluate additional refinancing and sell-down opportunities within our portfolio that could be executed within the next 12 months, to generate both additional value and cash flows to Northland."
Second-Quarter Earnings Conference Call
Northland will hold an earnings conference call on August 12, 2022, to discuss its 2022 second quarter results. The call will be hosted by Northland's Senior Management, who will discuss the financial results and company developments as well as answering questions from analysts.
Conference call details are as follows:
Friday, August 12, 2022, 10:00 a.m. ET
Participants wishing to join the call and ask questions must register using the following URL below:
For all other attendees, the call will be broadcast live on the internet, in listen-only mode and can be accessed using the following link:
Webcast URL: https://edge.media-server.com/mmc/p/ker5vfnp
For those unable to attend the live call, an audio recording will be available on northlandpower.com on August 15, 2022.
Northland's unaudited interim condensed consolidated financial statements for the three months ended June 30, 2022, and related Management's Discussion and Analysis can be found on SEDAR at www.sedar.com under Northland's profile and on northlandpower.com.
ABOUT NORTHLAND POWER
Northland Power is a global power producer dedicated to helping the clean energy transition by producing electricity from clean renewable resources. Founded in 1987, Northland has a long history of developing, building, owning and operating clean and green power infrastructure assets and is a global leader in offshore wind. In addition, Northland owns and manages a diversified generation mix including onshore renewables, efficient natural gas energy, as well as supplying energy through a regulated utility.
Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, with global offices in eight countries, Northland owns or has an economic interest in 3.0GW (net 2.6GW) of operating capacity. The Company also has a significant inventory of projects in construction and in various stages of development encompassing over 14GW of potential capacity.
Publicly traded since 1997, Northland's common shares, Series 1, Series 2 and Series 3 preferred shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols NPI, NPI.PR.A, NPI.PR.B and NPI.PR.C, respectively.
NON-IFRS FINANCIAL MEASURES
This press release includes references to the Company's adjusted earnings before interest, income taxes, depreciation and amortization ("Adjusted EBITDA"), Adjusted Free Cash Flow, Free Cash Flow and applicable payout ratios and per share amounts, measures not prescribed by International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), and therefore do not have any standardized meaning under IFRS and may not be comparable to similar measures presented by other companies. Non-IFRS financial measures are presented at Northland's share of underlying operations. These measures should not be considered alternatives to net income (loss), cash flow from operating activities or other measures of financial performance calculated in accordance with IFRS. Rather, these measures are provided to complement IFRS measures in the analysis of Northland's results of operations from management's perspective. Management believes that Northland's non-IFRS financial measures and applicable payout ratio and per share amounts are widely accepted and understood financial indicators used by investors and securities analysts to assess the performance of a company, including its ability to generate cash through operations.
This press release contains statements that constitute forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities laws ("forward-looking statements")that are provided for the purpose of presenting information about management's current expectations and plans. Readers are cautioned that such statements may not be appropriate for other purposes. Northland's actual results could differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, these forward-looking statements and, accordingly, the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements may or may not transpire or occur. Forward-looking statements include statements that are not historical facts and are predictive in nature, depend upon or refer to future events or conditions, or include words such as "expects," "anticipates," "plans," "predicts," "believes," "estimates," "intends," "targets," "projects," "forecasts" or negative versions thereof and other similar expressions or future or conditional verbs such as "may," "will," "should," "would" and "could." These statements may include, without limitation, statements regarding future Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted Free Cash Flow and Free Cash Flow, respective per share amounts, dividend payments and dividend payout ratios, guidance, the timing for the completion of construction, acquisitions, dispositions, investments or financings, attainment of commercial operations, the potential for future production from project pipelines, cost and output of development projects, litigation claims, plans for raising capital, and the future operations, business, financial condition, financial results, priorities, ongoing objectives, strategies and the outlook of Northland and its subsidiaries. These statements are based upon certain material factors or assumptions that were applied in developing the forward-looking statements, including the design specifications of development projects, the provisions of contracts to which Northland or a subsidiary is a party, management's current plans and its perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors, estimates and assumptions that are believed to be appropriate in the circumstances. Although these forward-looking statements are based upon management's current reasonable expectations and assumptions, they are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties. Some of the factors include, but are not limited to, risks associated with sales contracts, Northland's reliance on the performance of its offshore wind facilities at Gemini, Nordsee One and Deutsche Bucht for approximately 50% of its Adjusted EBITDA, counterparty risks, contractual operating performance, variability of sales from generating facilities powered by intermittent renewable resources, offshore wind concentration, natural gas and power market risks, operational risks, recovery of utility operating costs, Northland's ability to resolve issues/delays with the relevant regulatory and/or government authorities, permitting, construction risks, project development risks, acquisition risks, financing risks, disposition and joint-venture risks, interest rate and refinancing risks, liquidity risk, inflation risks, impact of regional or global conflicts, credit rating risk, currency fluctuation risk, variability of cash flow and potential impact on dividends, taxation, natural events, environmental risks, health and worker safety risks, market compliance risk, government regulations and policy risks, utility rate regulation risks, international activities, reliance on information technology, labour relations, reputational risk, insurance risk, risks relating to co-ownership, bribery and corruption risk, legal contingencies, and the other factors described in the "Risks Factors" section of Northland's Management's Discussion and Analysis and Annual Information Form for the year ended December 31, 2021, which can be found at www.sedar.com under Northland's profile and on Northland's website at northlandpower.com. Northland has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to materially differ from current expectations, however, there may be other factors that cause actual results to differ materially from such expectations. Northland's actual results could differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, these forward-looking statements and, accordingly, no assurances can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will transpire or occur and Northland cautions you not to place undue reliance upon any such forward-looking statements.
The forward-looking statements contained in this release are, unless otherwise indicated, stated as of the date hereof and are based on assumptions that were considered reasonable as of the date hereof. Other than as specifically required by law, Northland undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after such date or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, whether as a result of new information, future events or results, or otherwise.
For further information, please contact:
Mr. Wassem Khalil, Senior Director, Investor Relations
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