Infrastructure Ontario CFO leaves to head Creative Energy

Krishnan Iyer joins the Canadian company, which received backing from InstarAGF Asset Management in February to expand its district energy system business across North America.

Canadian company Creative Energy has hired Infrastructure Ontario’s chief financial officer to lead its efforts in building district energy systems across Canada after receiving backing from Toronto-based InstarAGF Asset Management.

Based in Vancouver, Creative Energy named Krishnan Iyer its president and chief executive last week. He is a district energy specialist who spent the past four years working near the top of Ontario’s C$8 billion ($6.1 billion; €5.2 billion) infrastructure development arm. Since 2014, he was IO’s CFO, where he helped create a “credit framework for infrastructure lending”, including for multi-billion-dollar public-private partnerships, according to a statement.

Prior to joining Infrastructure Ontario in 2014, Mr Iyer served as interim Chief Financial Officer of Borealis Infrastructure, which owns and manages major infrastructure assets in North America and Europe. Before that, he spent 15 years as CFO of Enwave Energy Corporation, one of Canada’s largest district energy companies. He was “instrumental in expanding the footprint of district energy in Toronto,” a statement said.

That fits well with Creative Energy’s growth plans, especially after an investment for an undisclosed amount from fund manager InstarAGF in February that will help the company build out a C$150 million project pipeline in Vancouver and expand into Toronto.

Creative Energy already manages 14 kilometres of distribution pipes in 210 buildings in downtown Vancouver using technologies including cooling, heat and recovery and combined heat and power.

Iyer said in a statement he and his new company will be focused on “innovating neighbourhood energy systems” by working with municipalities, developers and institutions to improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. “I look forward to contributing to Creative Energy’s leadership in developing, financing, renewing and managing sustainable urban energy infrastructure,” he said.

InstarAGF invested in Creative Energy using its Essential Infrastructure fund, which closed in June 2017 on C$740 million and has deployed more than half its capital in assets including a passenger terminal at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, a midstream energy services business and aviation company Skyservice Investments.

The firm is known to be considering launching its next fund early next year and would target around C$1 billion.