TransAlta Renewables Reports First Quarter 2019 Results
First Quarter 2019 Financial Highlights
-- Comparable EBITDA increased $6 million over Q1 2018 to $116 million; -- Adjusted funds from operations decreased $3 million compared to Q1 2018; and -- Cash available for distribution decreased approximately 4% year-over-year.
TransAlta Renewables Inc. ("TransAlta Renewables" or the "Company") (TSX:RNW.TO) today reported its financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2019. Comparable EBITDA((1,2)) of $116 million was approximately 5% higher than last year. Cash available for distribution((1)) for the first quarter was $92 million, a decrease of $4 million compared to 2018, due to higher sustaining capital expenditures and a negative foreign exchange adjustment.
Reported net earnings attributable to common shareholders increased $10 million compared to the first quarter of 2018, primarily due to an increase in the fair value of preferred shares that track the underlying economics of an amortizing term loan held by TransAlta Energy (Australia) Pty Ltd. ("TEA"), partially offset by foreign exchange losses.
"Results in the first quarter were a great way to start off the year," said John Kousinioris, President. "We are excited to commission our two US wind projects later this year and continue to be focused on adding new accretive projects to the fleet."
2019 Highlights and Subsequent Events
-- In January of this year, the Company and TransAlta Corporation ("TransAlta") executed a series of transactions in response to the enactment of anti-hybrid tax rules within Australia. TEA redeemed its outstanding preferred shares and, immediately following the redemptions, the Company subscribed for preferred shares of a subsidiary of TransAlta which track the underlying economics of an amortizing term loan of TEA payable to another subsidiary of TransAlta. -- On March 28, 2019, a subsidiary of TransAlta closed the acquisition of the Antrim wind project which was previously announced on February 20, 2018. The Company has an economic interest in the 29 MW project, located in New Hampshire, which has two 20-year PPAs with counterparties which have Standard & Poor's credit ratings of A+ or better. Commercial operation of the Antrim wind project is expected during the second half of 2019.
The following table depicts key financial results and statistical operating data:
First Quarter 2019 Highlights
In $CAD millions, unless otherwise stated 3 months ended 3 months ended March 31, 2019 March 31, 2018 --- Renewable energy production (GWh) (3) 1,001 1,004 --- Revenues 127 125 --- Comparable EBITDA(1,2) 116 110 --- Adjusted funds from operations(1) 94 97 --- Cash available for distribution(1) 92 96 --- Net earnings attributable to common shareholders 76 66 --- Net earnings per share attributable to common shareholders, basic and diluted 0.29 0.26 --- Adjusted funds from operations per share(1) 0.36 0.39 --- Cash available for distribution per share(1) 0.35 0.38 --- Dividends paid per common share 0.23 0.23 --- Dividends declared per common share 0.23 0.23 ---
The following tables provide further detail on the allocation of the comparable EBITDA between owned assets and assets in which TransAlta Renewables holds an economic interest; as well as a reconciliation to adjusted funds from operations.
2019 2018 3 Months Ended March 31 ($CAD millions) --- Owned Economic Total Owned Economic Total Assets Interest Assets Interest --- Comparable EBITDA 74 42 116 73 37 110 --- Interest expense (10) (10) (10) (10) --- Sustaining capital expenditures (7) (1) (8) (5) (1) (6) --- Current income tax expense (1) (2) (3) (2) (2) --- Tax equity distributions (1) (1) --- Provisions 2 2 --- interest income 1 1 1 1 --- Foreign exchange adjustment (1) (1) 2 2 --- Adjusted funds from operations 57 37 94 59 38 97 ---
A complete copy of TransAlta Renewables' first quarter report including MD&A and unaudited financial statements is available through TransAlta Renewables' website at www.transaltarenewables.com or at SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
Notes (1) Comparable EBITDA refers to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization including finance lease income and adjusted for certain other items. Adjusted funds from operations includes the deduction of sustaining capital expenditures and distributions to non-controlling interests and excludes the effects of timing and working capital on distributions from subsidiaries of TransAlta in which the Company holds an economic interest. Cash available for distribution refers to adjusted funds from operations less principal repayments of amortizing debt. These items are not defined under International Financial Reporting Standards ("IFRS"). Presenting these items from period to period provides management and investors with the ability to evaluate earnings and cash flow trends more readily in comparison with prior periods' results. Refer to the Non-IFRS Measures section of the MD&A for further discussion of these items, including, where applicable, reconciliations to measures calculated in accordance with IFRS. (2) During the first quarter of 2019, we revised our approach to reporting adjustments to arrive at comparable EBITDA, mainly to be more comparable with other companies in the industry. Comparable EBITDA is now adjusted to exclude the impact of unrealized mark-to-market gains or losses. Both the current and prior period amounts have been adjusted to reflect this change. (3) Includes production from the Wyoming Wind Farm and excludes Canadian and Australian gas-fired generation. Production is not a key revenue driver for gas-fired facilities as most of their revenues are capacity based.
About TransAlta Renewables Inc.
TransAlta Renewables is among the largest of any publicly traded renewable independent power producers ("IPP") in Canada. Our asset platform and economic interests are diversified in terms of geography, generation and counterparties and consist of interests in 21 wind facilities, 13 hydroelectric facilities, seven natural gas generation facilities, one solar facility and one natural gas pipeline, representing an ownership interest of 2,414 megawatts of owned generating capacity, located in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Québec, New Brunswick, the States of Wyoming, Massachusetts, Minnesota and the State of Western Australia. Our objectives are to (i) provide stable, consistent returns for investors through the ownership of, and investment in, highly contracted renewable and natural gas power generation and other infrastructure assets that provide stable cash flow primarily through long-term contracts with strong counterparties; (ii) pursue and capitalize on strategic growth opportunities in the renewable and natural gas power generation and other infrastructure sectors; (iii) maintain diversity in terms of geography, generation and counterparties; and (iv) pay out 80 to 85 per cent of cash available for distribution to the shareholders of the Company on an annual basis.
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward Looking Information
This news release contains forward looking statements, including statements regarding the business and anticipated financial performance of the Company that are based on the Company's current expectations, estimates, projections and assumptions in light of its experience and its perception of historical trends. In some cases, forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "plans", "expects", "proposed", "will", "anticipates", "develop", "continue", and similar expressions suggesting future events or future performance. In particular, this news release contains forward-looking statements, including certain financial outlooks, pertaining to, without limitation, the following: commissioning the two US wind projects later this year; and adding new accretive projects to the Company's fleet. These forward-looking statements are not historical facts but reflect the Company's current expectations concerning future plans, actions and results. These statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual plans, actions and results to differ materially from current expectations including, but not limited to: competitive factors in the renewable power industry; operational breakdowns, failures, or other disruptions; changes in economic and market conditions; continued access to debt, tax equity, and capital markets; changes in tax, environmental, and other laws and regulations; and other risks and uncertainties discussed in the Company's materials filed with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities from time to time and as also set forth in the Company's MD&A for the year ended December 31, 2018 and 2019 Annual Information Form. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which reflect the Company's expectations only as of the date of this news release. The purpose of the financial outlooks contained herein is to give the reader information about management's current expectations and plans and readers are cautioned that such information may not be appropriate for other purposes. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
Note: All financial figures are in Canadian dollars unless noted otherwise.
SOURCE TransAlta Renewables Inc
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SOURCE: TransAlta Renewables Inc
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