DEFS Finishes 2000 With Multiple Transactions

Duke Energy Field Services (DEFS) finished off 2000 with a bang by completing three year-end asset transactions. First, the company finalized the $91 million sale of natural gas liquid (NGL) pipeline assets to TEPPCO Crude Pipeline, L.P., then it completed the purchase of certain natural gas pipeline assets from El Paso Field Services in two separate deals for an undisclosed sum.

The assets sold to TEPPCO include the Panola Pipeline and the San Jacinto Pipeline, both of which are NGL pipelines. Under the agreement, TEPPCO also agreed to take over the lease of a 34-mile condensate pipeline. The three pipelines included in the sale all originate at DEFS' East Texas Plant Complex located in Panola County, TX.

"This sale underscores our strategy of growing earnings through our TEPPCO master limited partnership," said Jim Mogg, CEO of DEFS. "In 2000, we almost doubled the distribution that DEFS received as the general partner of TEPPCO Partners, L.P., and at the same time increased the distribution to limited partnership unitholders."

In the second transaction, which the company completed on Dec. 28, 2000, DEFS acquired 100% of Gas Transmission Teco, Inc.'s common stock. The company owns interests in the 500-mile Teco intrastate natural gas pipeline in Texas, and was purchased from El Paso Field Services.

Included in the assets, DEFS gained a 50% interest in the El Paso-operated West Texas Line which travels from Waha to New Braunfels, a 100% interest in the Guadalupe Line that travels from New Braunfels to Dewville, and a 50% interest in the MidTex Line from Dewville to Katy. DEFS also received several supply lines and related assets with the acquisition.

DEFS said the lines combined have a 250 MMcf/d of natural gas capacity, and extend from Waha in West Texas to Katy. The company also noted that the lines interconnect five DEFS plants with a combined processing capacity of 640 MMcf/d.

"The timely addition of this strategic system provides DEFS with increased marketing opportunities for the gas from these plants," said Mogg. "The lines also allow DEFS new access to the growing San Antonio/Austin corridor."

In DEFS' third end of the year transaction, the company acquired El Paso Field Services' 50% interest in the 265-mile San Jacinto natural gas pipeline. The transaction brings DEFS' ownership up to 100%. The San Jacinto line provides gas gathering and transportation services along the Texas Gulf Coast, with delivery to a third party and two DEFS gas processing plants.

DEFS was formed last year when Duke Energy and Phillips Petroleum combined their natural gas gathering and processing businesses. Duke Energy holds a 70% stake in the company while Phillips retains a 30% share.

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