101 Park Ave.//New York, NY 10178-0060//United States
Michael Espinoza advises on energy transactions, with a focus on power, gas, regulated utilities, and renewable energy. He represents clients on a variety of deals, including mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures involving electric generating facilities, regulated electric and gas utilities, retail electric providers, and electric transmission facilities.
Mike also represents clients on power purchase and offtake agreements, project agreements for traditional and renewable projects and joint venture, partnership, and other investment structures involving the development and ownership of electric generating, storage, and transmission assets.
Mike advises clients on general corporate matters and corporate governance issues. His clients include regulated utilities and utility affiliates, generation owners, retail energy suppliers, transmission owners, financial institutions, infrastructure funds, and private equity investors.
Summit Utilities, Inc. in its $2.15 billion acquisition of the Arkansas and Oklahoma gas distribution utility businesses of CenterPoint Energy, Inc.
Lake AIV, LP, a portfolio company of Basalt Infrastructure Partners, in its sale of Upper Peninsula Power Holding Company, the owner of a regulated electric utility in Michigan, to Axium UP Holdings LLC, a portfolio company of Axium Infrastructure.
A power generation company in its acquisition of a 300 MW wind generation facility in South Dakota from a major wind developer.
FirstEnergy Corp. and its subsidiaries, Metropolitan Edison Company, Jersey Central Power & Light Company, Pennsylvania Electric Company, and GPU Nuclear, Inc., in the sale of Three Mile Island Generating Station, Unit 2, which permanently closed after a partial meltdown in 1979, to TMI-2 Solutions, LLC, a subsidiary of EnergySolutions.
A power generation company in its acquisition of a 56 MW wind generation facility in West Virginia from a major wind developer.
Black Bear Transmission LLC, a portfolio company of Basalt Infrastructure Partners, in its acquisition of Ozark Gas Transmission, L.L.C., the owner of an interstate natural gas pipeline, and Ozark Gas Gathering, L.L.C., the owner of a natural gas gathering system, from a subsidiary of Enbridge Inc.
ENMAX Corporation in its $1.3 billion acquisition of Emera Maine, a regulated transmission and distribution utility in Maine, from Emera Inc.
Hydro One Limited in its proposed $5.3 billion acquisition of Avista Corporation, a regulated electric and gas utility in the Pacific Northwest
Great Plains Energy in its stock-for-stock merger of equals transaction with Westar Energy, Inc., creating Evergy Inc., a company with a combined equity value of approximately $15 billion with nearly 13,000 MW of generation capacity and more than 51,000 miles of distribution lines
A consortium led by Basalt Infrastructure Partners II LP in its acquisition of Detroit Renewable Energy LLC, an integrated renewable energy system comprised of Detroit Thermal, Detroit Renewable Power, and Hamtramck Energy Services
Talen Energy Corporation in its $189 million sale of Interstate Energy Company LLC, the owner of a natural gas and oil pipeline in Pennsylvania, to Adelphia Gateway LLC, a subsidiary of New Jersey Resources Corporation
A power generation company in its acquisition of a 276 MW wind generation project in Texas from a major wind developer
A power generation company in its $469 million acquisition of a 90.1% interest in a 257 MW wind generation facility in Texas from a major wind developer
Talen Energy Corporation in its $1.175 billion acquisition of MACH Gen LLC, the holding company of three large natural gas-fired power plants in New York, Massachusetts, and Arizona with a total capacity of over 2,500 MW
Duke Energy Corporation in its $2.8 billion sale of its entire Midwest merchant generation business to a subsidiary of Dynegy Inc., which included ownership interests in 11 power plants with a total capacity of approximately 6,100 MW, as well as Duke’s competitive retail electric and gas business (Platts Global Energy Awards, 2015 Strategic Deal of the Year)
A power generation company in its acquisitions of a 174 MW wind generation project in Texas and a 126 MW wind generation project in Texas from a major wind developer
Basalt Infrastructure Partners in its formation of Texas Microgrid LLC, a joint venture with Enchanted Rock, Ltd. to construct distributed gas generation microgrids on customer sites in Texas
National Grid USA in its contribution of its equity interests in Iroquois Gas Transmission System LP to Dominion Midstream Partners LP in exchange for approximately $225 million in public equity
A private equity fund in its acquisition of 12 solar projects totaling 80 MW from a developer
Integrys Energy Group Inc. in its sale of a portfolio of over 50 distributed solar projects to TerraForm Power LLC
Rochester Gas & Electric Corporation in its negotiation with R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Plant LLC, a subsidiary of Constellation Energy Nuclear Group LLC, of a reliability support services agreement for the continued operation for reliability purposes of a 581MW nuclear power plant in Ontario, New York
An electric utility group in its negotiation of multiple 20-year wind power purchase agreements to purchase power from wind projects totaling approximately 850 MW
Integrys Energy Group Inc. in its sale of its competitive retail electric and natural gas business, Integrys Energy Services Inc., to Exelon Generation Company LLC
Integrys Energy Group Inc. in its $300 million sale of Upper Peninsula Power Company, a regulated electric utility in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, to Balfour Beatty Infrastructure Partners LP
Optim Energy LLC in its all aspects of its electric generation business, including in connection with its Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the District of Delaware
Awards and Affiliations
Ranked, Energy: Electricity (Transactional), Nationwide, Chambers USA (2021)
Recommended, M&A/corporate and commercial: M&A: large deals ($1bn+), The Legal 500 US (2020)
Recommended, Energy: Renewable/Alternative, The Legal 500 US (2017, 2018)
Rising Star, New York Metro Super Lawyers (2017, 2018)