Canada fund hydro earnings beat forecast

9 March 2007

The Canada-based small hydro specialist fund said its expects the hydro division to perform at least long term average hydrological conditions in 2007 across its North American portfolio.

Algonquin reported a 9.6% jump in operating profits for last year to CAN$31M on revenues up nearly 5% to almost CAN$46M. Costs declined slightly to CAN$16.7M compared to the previous year.

Regionally, the top performers were Quebec, Ontario and New York, which helped the division generate electricity at 103% of long term average compared to only 94% in 2005. Weaker sales in the western Canada region were die to a return to long term average hydrology, the fund said in a statement.

Total power sold increased 11.5% to 678,505 MW-hrs with the main region, Quebec, seeing enjoying a 14.3% rise to 305,656 MW-hrs. The biggest proportion increases were in New York and Ontario, which saw energy sales improve 32.1% to 95,062 MW-hrs and 21.1% to 126,239 MW-hrs, respectively.

The fund said it will pursue acquisitions to diversify regional and hydrological exposure, and that there would continue to be a review of rationalisation options. It has a portfolio of 47 hydro plants which total 142.5MW in capacity, representing just over a third of its asset base. The average life if the division's power purchase agreements is

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