GPRE Acquires BioFuel Energy Ethanol Plants

Joanna Schroeder

Green Plains Renewable Energy (GRPE) has announced a definitive agreement to acquire two of BioFuel Energy Corp’s (BIOF) ethanol plants from its lender group. The ethanol plants are located in Wood River, Nebraska and Fairmont, Minnesota. The two facilities have a combined green_plainsannual production capacity of approximately 220 million gallons, and the acquisition will increase GPRE’s production capacity by 28 percent to over 1.0 billion gallons of ethanol, 2.9 million tons of distillers grains (DDGs) and 230 million pounds of corn oil per year.

BIOF had previously agreed to transfer the ethanol plants to the lender group entity pursuant to a deed in lieu of foreclosure. Following the transfers, GPRE will purchase the ethanol plants and certain related assets from the lender group entity for approximately $101 million, plus working capital. The company intends to fund the purchase with nearly $77 million in term debt and the balance in cash.

The closing of the transaction, which is expected to occur during the fourth quarter of 2013, is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. Upon successful completion of the transaction, Green Plains will work to restart the Fairmont, MN plant, which the Company anticipates being back in production by the end of 2013. Carl Marks Advisory Group LLC advised the lender group entity in this transaction.

“Our growth strategy remains focused on right location, right technology at the right price for ethanol production assets and this acquisition meets all three criteria,” stated Todd Becker, GPRE president and CEO. “We have become very proficient in operating multiple process technologies and adding these two ethanol plants continues to drive greater economies of scale in our marketing, risk management and back office operations. We believe this acquisition will be accretive to 2014 earnings and is consistent with our strategy to expand our operations throughout the ethanol value chain and grow long-term shareholder value.”

biofuels, Ethanol, Renewable Energy