Timeline For Ascendant Sale Decision Extended

February 10, 2020

The Minister of Home Affairs has extended the statutory timeline for a final decision on the application for Algonquin to purchase the Ascendant Group to October 4th, 2020.

A spokesperson said, “On 3 June 2019 Ascendant Group Limited signed an agreement with Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. for Algonquin to purchase the Company for $36 per share subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals.

“A special general meeting of the Company’s shareholders was held on 9 August 2019 and the required approval for the Sale, two-thirds of the total issued and outstanding shares of the Company, was exceeded.

“In early October 2019, the Company began the process to seek the necessary regulatory approvals that would allow the Sale to proceed. An application for change of control of Bermuda Electric Light Company Limited [BELCO] from Ascendant to Algonquin [Application] was submitted to the Regulatory Authority [RA] with an anticipated timeline for a decision of approximately four months.

“The Minister of Home Affairs has now exercised his discretion under the Regulatory Authority Act 2011 and extended the statutory timeline for a final decision on the Application to 4 October 2020. [PDF]

Screenshot of the official notice:


“In light of this substantial extension, the Company will continue to work with the Minister and the RA to ensure that final consideration of the Application is completed as expeditiously as possible.

“The Ascendant Board of Directors is confident that the Sale will ensure Bermuda and BELCO’s customers are well served with reliable electricity that will be cleaner, more efficient and more cost-effective.

“Algonquin has committed to reducing BELCO’s operating costs by $5M, with no company-initiated job reductions in connection with the Sale, to benefit the customer, investing $5M to launch the Sustainable Bermuda Foundation with the purpose of advancing and promoting renewable energy, conservation and sustainability in Bermuda, and investing $300M into renewable energy in Bermuda through a competitive process.

“These commitments are in addition to BELCO’s pre-existing $250 million investment in capital infrastructure upgrades. These commitments are expected to benefit all our stakeholders – our employees, customers and the Bermuda community.”

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Comments (8)

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  1. Hmmmm says:

    for some reason the RA and Minister are procrastinating … My first though… what are the up to? 4 months should be sufficient!!

    • chips says:

      agreebwhat the hell are they up to. it smells a bit rotten when they pull this crap.

    • CHRIS says:

      EXACTLY! why do they need another EIGHT months on top of the 4 months they’ve had. The RA are not that busy but need a year to read the contract?
      Give me a big fat break. Can no one in Home Affairs read a contract either?

  2. ChrissyB says:

    Let me get this straight. Algonquin wants to inject $300M into renewable energy for Bermuda and the RA/Government need more time to think about this?

    WHAT A LAUGHING STOCK! This government is probably only stalling to find ways to take over BELCO themselves. They can’t even put a bus schedule together and now they talking about taking over insurance too? HAHAHA Where is the peoples campaign? Where is Furbert? Where is Tweed? I would at least think they were smart enough to see that this is a HORRIBLE idea. A sign of no protest shows that they are actually just little sheep blindly following. Puppets

  3. Joe Bloggs says:

    That is a bit of a joke given the Government’s position that it opposes the sale. Why the delay? To give more time for the Government to apply more pressure on the “independent” RA to deny permission for the sale?

  4. on de rock says:

    Would love to hear from the Government why this is going to take an extra 8 months. The Bermuda economy needs a boost and this would be a big one. And it is real, unlike Fintech, gambling, etc. People need to demand answers.

  5. Really says:

    They want to not sell to the Canadians. Otherwise they look like the OBA on the airport / Carolina Bay deal!

  6. Question says:

    The government standing in the way of progress as usual.