Many Canadian companies considering US expansion are heavy power users and electricity costs can easily eat away at profits. As Canadian companies seek US expansion for many reasons (made in USA requirements, supply chain, bridge issues/delays, etc.), being able to manage operating costs is yet another major consideration.
When BNE is working through the due diligence process with a prospective company, energy needs and consumption are discussed. With a large power user, we typically run a comparison between Canadian costs for monthly usage and what the same usage would cost in Buffalo Niagara. The company shares its current electric bill and our local utility runs the numbers. Most times there are significant savings.
Many of the larger power users are companies in plastic injection molding or extruding, food processing, or steel processing and fabrication. A recent example is a plastics company that currently pays $0.13 per kWh for power in Canada. By comparison, they would pay an estimated cost of $0.082 per kWh for that same operation in Buffalo Niagara and realize a savings of over $18,000 each month. A different plastics company could save more than $20,000 per month by reducing their electric costs from $0.14 per kWh to $0.098 per kWh. We were able to identify over $50,000 in monthly savings for a food processing company currently paying $0.19 per kWh for electric. Their pricing in Buffalo Niagara is estimated at $0.083 per kWh.
In addition to standard utility savings, companies may also qualify for special incentive programs that further reduce power costs. New York State offers some programs and others are administered by the local utility. Many are contingent upon the number of new jobs that the company will be creating and the total investment into the new facility. Prospective companies should consider these programs once they have identified a potential building or land site. Thanks to our ability to offer low-cost power, selecting Buffalo Niagara for US expansion can make great economic sense for our Canadian neighbors.
by Carolyn Powell, Business Development Manager