SOURCE: US Renewables Group

October 05, 2005 08:00 ET

US Renewables Group Closes Initial $80 Million to Fund Renewable Energy Projects

Company Both Owns and Operates Renewable Energy Assets

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- October 5, 2005 -- US Renewables Group ("USRG"), a company organized to acquire, develop and operate renewable energy and clean fuel assets, today announced an initial close of $80 million as part of its plan to raise a total of $250 million in financing. Initial investors include Rustic Canyon Partners and several other investors. Founded in 2003 to invest in renewable energy operating assets, USRG focuses on stationary power generation (landfill methane, waste-to-gas, biomass and geothermal) and clean fuels (biodiesel, ethanol and coal-to-liquid).

Several factors have converged to dramatically improve the outlook for the renewable energy market -- the adoption of renewable energy portfolio standards, now effective in 21 states; the environmental challenges posed by the continued use of non-renewable resources; and rising fuel prices. According to Global Energy Decisions, a provider of market data to the energy industry, renewable power and clean fuels are two of the fastest-growing segments in the US energy industry, with compounded annual growth rates of 10-20 percent per year.

USRG addresses an opportunity in the renewable energy market that neither traditional private equity nor venture capital investors currently address. Renewable energy financings require a strong understanding of project equity, senior and subordinated debt structures, regulatory compliance, fuel supply and power purchase agreements. Because of its unique structure and management team, USRG has the necessary skills to successfully operate renewable energy assets in a cost effective manner.

"In an increasingly volatile energy market, USRG believes that owning and operating renewable energy assets is an excellent hedge against rising oil and natural gas prices. USRG offers investors a method to obtain above-average current income and capital appreciation," said Jim McDermott, the CEO of USRG. "No one questions the environmental benefits of renewable energy as an alternative source of power and fuel. Yet when you also consider the growth fundamentals and lack of legitimate pure play renewables companies, it becomes clear why USRG is such a compelling investment opportunity."

Consistent with the company's stated goal to become the US' leading Independent Renewable Energy Company ("IREC"), USRG owns and operates two landfill methane facilities in California (Los Angeles) and is building another facility in Texas (San Antonio). In addition, USRG is negotiating to acquire an additional 100 MWs of biomass power and to acquire more than 300 million gallons per year of ethanol capacity.

"USRG has gained a reputation as an organization that understands the intricacies of the renewable energy market," said Michael T. Eckhart, President of the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE). "Companies like USRG, that can provide capital while managing the risks that are particular to renewable energy projects, are filling a very important role in our sector."

"Renewable and efficient energy is a growing and increasingly attractive investment opportunity, and USRG's innovative approach of focusing on the operation of renewable energy assets creates an ideal fit for us," said Tom Unterman, Managing Partner at Rustic Canyon Partners.

About US Renewables Group

US Renewables Group, LLC ("USRG") is an investment company capitalizing on the fastest-growing segments of the $650B energy marketplace. USRG acquires, develops and operates renewable stationary power generation and clean fuel assets primarily in North America. USRG operates nationally from headquarters in Los Angeles and offices in New York. For more information, please visit the company Web site at www.usregroup.com.

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