Great River Energy Closes 2012 on Financial High Note


Great River Energy Closes 2012 on Financial High Note

Cooperative refunds member cooperatives while recording positive finances

MAPLE GROVE, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- By working hard to contain costs and improve efficiency, Great River Energy yielded impressive financial returns in 2012. In addition to boosting the company's bottom line, Great River Energy closed the year by returning millions to its member cooperatives.

Great River Energy's 2012 revenues totaled more than $921 million, and 2012 margins exceeded $45 million outpacing its budgeted margin target of $40 million, according to unaudited financial results. Great River Energy will invest those margins into the organization to help fund future capital expenditures, thereby, offsetting future cost increases. Throughout 2012, Great River Energy also refunded more than $5 million to its member cooperatives through a power cost adjustment.

Great River Energy's power costs adjustment is a mechanism in wholesale power contracts that credits or debits its member distribution cooperatives based on the variable components of power costs, such as fluctuating power market prices and fuel expenses.

"In 2012, our objective was the same as it has always been: operate and maintain world-class generation and transmission resources that provide value to our member cooperatives," said Great River Energy President and CEO David Saggau. "However, we also empower our employees to analyze their work and seek out better, more efficient solutions - and the results are impressive."

This challenge is one aspect of a company-wide "business improvement" program that encourages employees to discover more cost-effective ways to work. In 2012 alone Great River Energy employees recorded savings opportunities of more than $8.3 million. Since the program's inception in 2002, it has amassed cumulative savings of $83.3 million.

In 2012, that savings represented the difference between positive and negative financial results. Better yet, these financial returns occurred despite flat energy and demand sales.

"We're a cooperative business and we're owned by 28 cooperatives. When Great River Energy succeeds, we all share the rewards," said Saggau. "To thrive in the face of flat sales is a direct result of the ingenuity of our employees, support of our board of directors and member cooperatives, and our commitment to keeping cooperative energy competitive."

About Great River Energy
Great River Energy is a not-for-profit cooperative which provides wholesale electric service to 28 distribution cooperatives in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Those member cooperatives distribute electricity to approximately 645,000 member consumers - or about 1.7 million people. With more than $3 billion in assets, Great River Energy is the second largest electric power supplier in Minnesota and one of the largest generation and transmission (G&T) cooperatives in the United States. Great River Energy's member cooperatives range from those in the outer-ring suburbs of the Twin Cities to the Arrowhead region of Minnesota to the farmland of southwestern Minnesota. Great River Energy's largest distribution cooperative serves more than 125,000 member-consumers; the smallest serves about 2,500. Learn more at

Great River Energy
Therese LaCanne, 763-445-5710

KEYWORDS: United States North America Minnesota


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