BRITISH COLUMBIA

Western Wind Energy suggests Brookfield Renewable Energy offer is too low

11/25/2012 08:58 EST | Updated 01/25/2013 05:12 EST
VANCOUVER - Western Wind Energy Corp. (TSXV:WND) suggested Sunday that a takeover bid put forward by Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners is too low.

Brookfield — which current holds a substantial minority equity stake in Western Wind — announced on Friday that it wanted to buy all outstanding Western Wind common shares for $2.50 per share.

Brookfield had paid about $24.4 million to buy about 10.7 million shares of Western Wind and 319,741 purchase warrants for its minority stake.

The Vancouver-based Western Wind, which owns and operates wind and solar generation facilities in California and Arizona, announced in July that its board and management had decided to sell the entire company and all its assets.

Western Wind had said Brookfield was invited to enter an auction process as the company sought a buyer, but Brookfield refused to participate.

The company said Sunday that other potential buyers, currently taking part in the second round of the auction process, appear to be putting forward offers which are better than Brookfield's.

"It is my personal opinion the Brookfield offer is too low, and I am committed to obtaining a better price for the shareholders than presently offered by Brookfield vis-a-vis a thorough sales process," said Western Wind CEO Jeff Ciachurski.

"The Western Wind shareholders deserve a complete process whereby the highest bids with the greatest likelihood of execution are submitted to the shareholders...The Brookfield offer is disruptive to a thorough sales process."

The company said a special committee will be reviewing Brookfield's offer when it is formally made, and will be making recommendations on all offers received once the auction process is complete.

Western Wind noted there is no guarantee any of the expressions of interest it has received will result in a formal offer being made.

The auction process itself has suffered setbacks due to a campaign to replace the board of directors at Western Wind. The proxy battle was centred over the issue of who would oversee a sale of the company.