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OwnEnergy Announces Groundbreaking Investment By NJR Clean Energy Ventures

BROOKLYN, N.Y., Sept. 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- OwnEnergy, Inc. a leading developer of mid-sized and community wind projects, announced today that NJR Clean Energy Ventures (CEV), a subsidiary of New Jersey Resources (NYSE:NJR), has joined its ranks of investors. CEV's minority ownership provides access to its balance sheet and tax capacity and reinforces wind energy's future and the strength of OwnEnergy's innovative model. A CEV representative will join OwnEnergy's board, which consists of board members representing investors that include EnerTech Capital Partners and Calpers Clean Energy & Technology Fund.

"Today, we officially enter the wind energy market, which will further diversify our investments in the renewable energy marketplace," said Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO of New Jersey Resources. "With our investment in OwnEnergy, we expect to maintain CEV's contribution of 15 to 25 percent of our consolidated earnings. We believe this ownership stake represents a sound investment for our company and look forward to developing new wind projects through this partnership to make clean energy, and its benefits, more accessible."     

Launched in 2007, OwnEnergy is a pioneer in the fast-growing mid-sized and community wind energy sector. The company's innovative business model enables its team of industry-leading professionals to provide a broad range of services to energy entrepreneurs interested in co-developing their own wind farms, rather than leasing their land to traditional developers. OwnEnergy partners with landowners, farmers, and local businesses to develop projects in the range of 10 to 80 megawatts (MW). Its "wind farm in a box" approach uses a combination of technology and standardized processes that enable OwnEnergy to develop mid-sized and community wind projects efficiently and cost effectively. The company provides everything necessary for a successful project, from development and contracting to operations and maintenance. 

"This establishes NJR Clean Energy Ventures and OwnEnergy as a formidable team in the next phase of America's energy future," said Jacob Susman, founder and CEO of OwnEnergy. "It connects the balance sheet and tax capacity of one of the most reputable energy companies on the East Coast to our proprietary technology and network of local energy entrepreneurs. Together, we're going to work to create cost-effective opportunities in wind generation."

From a strategic perspective, the established industry and development expertise of OwnEnergy will serve as an asset to CEV in developing effective, first-hand knowledge of the wind energy business. Making the deal more valuable, it also provides the option, but not the obligation, for CEV to purchase shovel-ready projects. These "community size" projects fit the size profile for CEV investments. OwnEnergy has developed and sold three projects, totaling 141 MW of power and has a pipeline of more than 1,300 MW in various stages of development. With today's announcement, the company seeks to expand its pipeline of mid-sized projects.

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