North American power deals: Mergers & acquisitions report

Q2 2019

The second quarter of 2019 proved to be a strong period for deal making in the Power & Utilities sector. The quarter featured notable Canadian activity, with four of the top 10 deals. Across North America, deal value returned to the strongest level since Q2 2018, even in the absence of any mega deals (valued at more than US$5 billion), driven largely by transactions from financial investors.

The J.P. Morgan and El Paso Electric Company deal, which was the largest transaction this quarter, highlights investments made by financial investors in the sector as they see potential for attractive returns. Canadian activity included IST3 Infrastruktur Global and TD Greystone's US$1.3-billion investment in a 500-kilometre transmission line in Alberta and Ontario Power Generation's US$1.1-billion acquisition of United States-based hydro operator Cube Hydro and Helix Partners. Other Canadian deals included Capital Power's acquisition of the Goreway Power Station in Ontario (US$726 million) and Energy Capital Partners purchase of a portfolio of fossil-fuel generation assets from Canadian Utilities (US$621 million).

Across North America, we saw a continuation of themes in the Power & Utilities deals market this quarter, with yield, access to infrastructure, rebalancing portfolios and balance sheet rationalization driving deal activity. At 26%, renewables played a more limited role in deal value this quarter, but they continued to represent a focus area for deal activity. While deal value remained elevated compared to recent quarters, deal volume decreased in Q2 2019 to the lowest level since Q3 2017.

“Canadian financial and strategic investors were involved in four of the top 10 deals this quarter. Asset deals continued to gain traction this quarter, driving deal volumes as portfolio rationalizations and renewables investment remained a focus.”

Ken Goodwin, National Deals Leader, Power & Utilities

Q2 Key trends and highlights


Total deal value increased to $12.3 billion in Q2 2019, making it the highest-value quarter since Q2 2018.

Financial deals drove deal value for the quarter (61%), a notable data point as Strategic deals typically drive reported deal value in the sector.


While Corporate deals drove a higher percentage of deal value (55%), Asset deals drove deal volume (69%).

Power and Utilities quarterly deals insights

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Helen Bremner

Partner, National Industry Leader, Power and Utilities, PwC Canada

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Eric Clarke

Partner, National Assurance Leader, Power & Utilities, PwC Canada

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Ken Goodwin

Partner, National Valuations Leader, PwC Canada

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Brian Poth

National Energy, Utilities, Mining and Industrial Manufacturing & Automotive Consulting Leader, PwC Canada

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Partner, Operations, PwC Canada

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James Strapp

Partner, Power & utilities, PwC Canada

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Partner, Tax, PwC Canada

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