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Alliance Equity Partner Distributing Shares

Alliance Equity Partner Distributing Shares

Calgary-based Fort Chicago Energy Partners L.P. --- which owns a 26% equity in the Alliance Pipeline project --- said that its largest unit holder, Gendis Inc., will distribute 8.5 million units to shareholders by Nov. 24. Gendis, based in Winnepeg, will retain 6.2 million units of Fort Chicago following the transaction.

Fort Chicago CEO Guy Turcotte said the transaction will "transform Fort Chicago into a more widely held public entity," and said it would "greatly increase its market float." The partnership became a publicly traded entity in January 1998, providing investors with an opportunity to participate in the Alliance projects. Fort Chicago Units trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "FCE.UN."

The dividend will be 0.5 of a Fort Chicago unit for each one Gendis common share outstanding. No fractional Fort Chicago Class A units will be distributed. Gendis and trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The C$4.6 billion Alliance natural gas and liquids pipeline, designed to transport 1.325 Bcf/d from northeast British Columbia to Chicago, has completed its construction phase and now is commissioning the main line, laterals, compressors and supervisory equipment (see NGI, Aug. 21). The 1,857 mile mainline is stretched to the Chicago area from northeastern BC, and is on target to begin service at the end of this month, carrying both natural gas and liquids.

The Alliance Pipeline Ltd. Partnership, the Canadian entity, owns and will operate 2,257 kilometers (1,402 miles) of mainline, laterals and facilities in Canada. The Canadian project was constructed at a direct capital cost of about C$12.4 billion (U.S.$1.6 billion). The American partnership owns and operates 888 miles of mainline, delivery and facilities in the United States, which were constructed at a direct capital cost of about $1.5 billion.

Investors in the system include affiliates of Fort Chicago (26%); Coastal Corp. (14.4%); Enbridge Inc. (21.4%); The Williams Companies Inc. (14.6%); and Westcoast Energy Inc. (23.6%).

Carolyn Davis, Houston

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