Introduction

Spark Power Announces Third Consecutive Quarter of Strong Financial Results and Renegotiates Banking Terms and Suspends Strategic Review due to COVID-19

Spark Power Announces Third Consecutive Quarter of Strong Financial Results and Renegotiates Banking Terms and Suspends Strategic Review due to COVID-19

First Quarter revenue increased 56.1% Year over Year to $53.5 million
First Quarter Adjusted EBITDA increased 58% Year over Year to $5.4 million
(Spark Power reports in Canadian dollars unless otherwise specified)

OAKVILLE, ONTARIO – May 4, 2020 – Spark Power Group Inc. (TSX: SPG), parent company of Spark Power Corp. (“Spark Power” or the “Company”), today announced its best ever financial results for a first quarter, with strong earnings and revenue for the three month period ended March 31, 2020.

“Spark Power had a great quarter despite the impacts of COVID-19 during the second half of March. This represents our third consecutive quarter of strong results and demonstrates the momentum that our business platform had been generating prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.  We are now at an annual run rate of $233M of revenue and $36M of EBITDA and we will look to continue down that track when we come out of this global crisis,” said Jason Sparaga, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Spark Power Corp.

“As a ‘physical’ business, we have certainly felt the effects of COVID-19, however, our strategy to broadly diversify our revenue by customer type, sector and geography has proven to be valuable in mitigating the impact. The stability of revenues from our regulated utility and renewable asset customers has helped offset the significant reductions we are currently seeing in certain parts of our commercial & industrial business. Within that commercial & industrial sector, we have been somewhat protected by virtue of our focus on key verticals such as food and beverage, data centers, material handling and fulfillment/distribution, which has qualified us as an essential service provider in all jurisdictions in which we operate.  And finally, with our geographic diversity, across North America we have found that different jurisdictions have weathered this crisis with less impact than others, providing further revenue protection,” added Sparaga.

“I am very proud of our management team and response to COVID-19.  We acted swiftly, taking aggressive but measured steps to protect the health and safety of our employees, serve our customers, and preserve and strengthen the financial health of our business. We have built the foundation to come out of this crisis strong.  Our corporate focus in the face of the pandemic was on business continuity. I am extremely pleased that we’ve come through that phase and are now focused on business revival and recovery,” said Andrew Clark, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Spark Power Corp. “We are starting to see the early upswings and movement in our business as customers begin to restart projects that were delayed due to the crisis. We are ready,” added Clark.

“By mid-March we realized that COVID-19 would have a material impact on our business and recognized that preserving liquidity would be critical. The steps we are taking to manage costs, focus on cash, work with our banking partners and use available government programs are paying off and we are well positioned to continue to fund our business and exit this crisis with the ability to support the needs of our customers as they ramp up their operations,” said Dan Ardila, Chief Financial Officer, Spark Power Corp. “We must stay the course for now, but we can see the light at the end of the tunnel,” added Ardila.

 

Financial Highlights – 1st Quarter

  • Record quarterly revenue at $53.5 million, as compared to $34.3 million from the comparable quarter in 2019 representing an increase of 56.1%.
  • On a pro forma basis revenue increased by $10.2 million or 23.7%.
  • Record quarterly adjusted EBITDA at $5.4 million, as compared to $3.2 million from the comparable quarter in 2019 representing an increase of 66.8%.
  • On a pro forma basis EBITDA grew $0.6 million or 13.3%.
  • Quarterly revenue growth balanced between organic growth of 29.8%, and growth from acquisitions of 26.3%.
  • Continued focus on managing selling, general, and administration costs, now at 25.3% of revenue in the first quarter as compared to 31.4% in the comparable quarter in 2019 reflecting the impact of the Company’s integration cost reduction program launched in the second half of 2019.
  • Gross margin declined in the first quarter to 24.9% as compared to 33.4% in the comparable quarter in 2019 primarily due to increased revenue contribution from parts of the business with lower gross margins (offset by structurally lower SG&A in those businesses) and the impact of lost business related to a large customer in our Bullfrog business with high margins.

 

Business Highlights—Operations

  • Focus on integration and on our operational platform creates a position of strength.
    • Regional operating model is now fully implemented.
    • SG&A cost management plan is now 80% complete, and is on target
    • Brand integration is well underway.
    • Our management team and investments in our operating platform positioned us well to pivot from our growth plans and respond to the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Management and operational focus over the past 6-7 weeks centered around managing the impacts of COVID-19 in three key areas: health and safety, liquidity, and maintaining service to our customers.
    • Daily leadership meetings have resulted in quick, decisive, and proportionate measures across the organization.
    • Daily communication with employees and health & wellness monitoring of all employees including those working from home. Fortunately, no Spark employee has tested positive for COVID-19.
    • Continued support for our essential service customers with safety measures in place including permanent crew policy (where possible), wipe down procedures, risk hazard analysis procedures, the use of cloth masks, and implementation of the Company’s COVID-19 Preparedness Response Plan.
  • Our diversified customer and geographic base have proven valuable.
    • Many of our customers, including essential services (such as food and beverage suppliers), utilities, and renewable asset owners, are relatively less affected by economic cycles and crises such as COVID-19.
  • Now shifting focus from business continuity to business revival and recovery.
    • We are well positioned operationally and financially to come out of the pandemic strong, including new protocols to protect the health and safety of our employees and our customers.
    • Preparation for new ‘normal’ includes development of new product offerings i.e. thermographic scanning solutions to measure elevated body temperatures.
    • Significant new renewables project wins in Ontario and Texas for solar and storage, as well as activity within our existing customer base, indicates continued underlying demand.

 

Business Highlights—Corporate Development

  • Our banking partner, the Bank of Montreal (BMO) continues to demonstrate confidence in and strong support for Spark during this crisis.
    • Negotiated an indicative term sheet with respect to temporarily amended banking facilities that provide additional liquidity and operational flexibility through expanded borrowing capacity, relaxation of certain covenants and the deferral of principal payments.
  • Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and U.S. Paycheck Protection Plan (PPP).
    • We qualify for both programs, allowing us to preserve salaried employees on our payroll and to recall laid off technicians in Canada and the US.
    • We have already been approved and received funds relating to the PPP. We are preparing our application under CEWS for April and expect to receive funds in the coming weeks.
  • Due to current market uncertainty, the Board of Directors has suspended the strategic review process announced on February 6 of this year. The Board will continue to monitor market conditions and assess whether the strategic review process should be recommenced at a later date.

 

Quarterly Conference Call

Management is hosting an investor conference call and webcast on May 5, 2020 ET at 8:30am (ET) to discuss its financial results in greater detail. To join by telephone dial: +1 (888) 231-8191 (toll-free in North America) or +1 (647) 427-7450 (local and international), with conference ID: 5734139. To listen to a live webcast of the call, please click here: https://produceredition.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1301867&tp_key=80b370c81c

Please dial in or log on 10 minutes prior to the start time to provide sufficient time to register for the event.

For those unable to listen to the live webcast, an archive will be made available on the Events and Presentations section of the Company’s investor website at http://sparkpowercorp.com/about-us/investors/events-presentations/. The recording will be made available shortly after the conclusion of the conference call and Annual General Meeting for a period of 90 days. 

Spark Power’s 2020 Audited Consolidated Financial Statements and Management Discussion and Analysis are available on Spark Power’s website at www.sparkpowercorp.com, and will be filed on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

 

About Spark Power

Spark Power is the leading independent provider of end-to-end electrical contracting, operations and maintenance services, and energy sustainability solutions to the industrial, commercial, utility, and renewable asset markets in North America. We work to earn the right to be our customers’ Trusted Partner in Power™. Our highly skilled and dedicated people, located in the communities we serve, combined with our knowledge of the power industry, technology expertise, and commitment to safety, ensures we deliver the right solutions that keep our customers’ operations up and running today and better equipped for tomorrow. Learn more at www.sparkpowercorp.com.

 

Non-IFRS Measures

The Company prepares and releases unaudited consolidated interim financial statements and audited consolidated annual financial statements prepared in accordance with IFRS. In this and other earnings releases and investor conference calls, as a complement to results provided in accordance with IFRS, the Company also discloses and discusses certain financial measures not recognized under IFRS and that do not have standard meanings prescribed by IFRS. These include “EBITDA”, “Adjusted EBITDA”, “Pro-forma Adjusted EBITDA”, “EBITDA Margin”, “Adjusted EBITDA Margin”, “Pro-forma Adjusted EBITDA Margin”, “Pro-forma Revenue”, “Adjusted Working Capital”, and “Adjusted Net and Comprehensive Income (Loss)”. These non-IFRS measures are used to provide investors with supplemental measures of Spark Power’s operating performance and highlight trends in Spark Power’s business that may not otherwise be apparent when relying solely on IFRS measures. Spark also believes that providing such information to securities analysts, investors and other interested parties who frequently use non-IFRS measures in the evaluation of issuers will allow them to better compare Spark Power’s performance against others in its industry. Management also uses non-IFRS measures in order to facilitate operating performance comparisons from period to period, to prepare annual operating budgets and forecasts and to determine components of management compensation. For a reconciliation of these non-IFRS measures see the Company’s management’s discussion and analysis for the three and twelve months ended March 31, 2020. The non-IFRS measures should not be construed as alternatives to results prepared in accordance with IFRS.

 

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

 This news release may contain forward-looking statements (within the meaning of applicable securities laws) which reflect Spark Power’s current expectations regarding future events. Forward-looking statements are identified by words such as “believe”, “anticipate”, “project”, “expect”, “intend”, “plan”, “will”, “may”, “estimate” and other similar expressions. These statements are based on Spark Power’s expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections and include, without limitation, statements regarding the future success of the Company’s business, including revenue growth, synergistic savings expected to be realized, potential expansion of the business and include, without limitation, statements regarding the growth and financial performance of Spark Power’s business and execution of its business strategy by Messrs. Sparaga, Clark and Ardila.

 The forward-looking statements in this news release are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to control or predict. Several factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the results discussed in the forward-looking statements. Readers, therefore, should not place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. Further, these forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release and, except as expressly required by applicable law, Spark Power assumes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

 

Selected Consolidated Financial Information

 

The following table summarizes Spark Power’s results for the periods indicated:

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Investor and Regulatory Inquiries:
Dan Ardila
Chief Financial Officer
dardila@sparkpowercorp.com
+1 (905) 829-3336 x127

Media Inquiries:
Natasha McNabb
Corporate Communications Specialist
nmcnabb@sparkpowercorp.com
+1 (289) 259-4399