Industry Briefs

Semco Energy bought Iowa Pipelines Associates (IPA) for an undisclosed amount Monday, in the company's initial move to strengthen its gas construction services after exiting the gas marketing business. IPA will continue to operate with its own name under the Semco Energy Ventures section of the company. Semco said the deal should close sometime this week. "By acquiring Iowa Pipeline Associates, we have expanded our capacity to provide quality engineering and construction services for an ever-widening customer base," said William Johnson, Semco Energy's CEO. Semco revealed its strategy last month, when it sold its gas marketing assets to CoEnergy, an MCN affiliate, for an undisclosed amount. Johnson, said the sale allowed the company to concentrate on becoming "one of the largest providers of underground engineering and construction services in North America." IPA builds underground natural gas pipelines and local gas distribution networks for customers in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska.

Columbia Gas Transmission said it opened a data room to provide information on 545 miles of small-diameter gas gathering pipelines, called the CHEWP system, and the Holbrook Storage Field, which has 1.5 Bcf of total capacity in northern West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania. Anyone interested in the assets should make an appointment to visit the data room in Charleston, WVA, by calling (304) 357-2282 or visit Columbia's web site at bids are due May 21. Sales are subject to regulatory approval.

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