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Chevron Boosts Stake in Bridgeline Holdings, Buys 40% from Targa

In an effort to grow its domestic natural gas business, San Ramon, CA-based Chevron Corp. on Friday purchased Targa Resources's 40% stake in Bridgeline Holdings (BLH). Chevron will own 100% of the Louisiana pipeline and storage operation. The terms and sale price were not disclosed.

Bridgeline operates about 1,000 miles of pipeline in Louisiana from the Texas border to the Mississippi River Corridor and has about 13 Bcf in working gas storage capacity in the Sorrento and Napoleonville salt dome storage fields.

BLH was formed in 2000 between Texaco (60%) and Enron (40%), with Chevron taking over Texaco's interest following its September 2001 merger (see Daily GPI, Sept. 10, 2001) and Targa acquiring its ownership in BLH in late 2004. After formation of the limited partnership, Chevron acted as the operator of the BLH assets under an operator services agreement.

"Securing full ownership in this strategically located natural gas infrastructure is consistent with the company's ongoing efforts to grow its global gas business," said Chevron Pipe Line President Tom Winterton. "Pipelines provide an essential final link in enabling the distribution of natural gas to customers. With demand for clean, abundant natural gas expected to outpace oil over the next two decades, we are pleased to be investing in infrastructure for the future."

Targa Resources made a much larger purchase of midstream assets during the week, paying $2.475 billion for Dynegy Inc. midstream assets on Tuesday (see Daily GPI, Aug. 3). Dynegy's assets, which are located in West Texas, southeastern New Mexico and North Texas and on the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast, include 9,300 miles of gas gathering pipeline systems and 11 operated gas plants. The assets also include interests in six nonoperated gas plants, three stand-alone fractionation facilities and strategic storage, transportation and terminaling facilities on the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast.

Targa CEO Rene R. Joyce, former president of operations for Tejas Gas Group, formed the company with several other prominent gas executives and with financial backing from Warburg Pincus in 2003. Other members of Targa's management team include former officials with Tejas Gas, Coral, Tejas Energy, Coastal and PG&E Gas Transmission.

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