Shares soar as Green Plains forms subsidiary, seeks approval for IPO

Source: By Russell Hubbard, Omaha World Herald • Posted: Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Shares of Green Plains Inc. soared Monday after the Omaha-based ethanol producer said it is forming a new publicly traded partnership that will seek investors for the larger company’s storage and transportation businesses.

The company said Monday it has formed a subsidiary called Green Plains Partners that is seeking Securities and Exchange Commission approval for an initial public offering that would raise as much as $250 million.

Green Plains Inc. itself already is publicly traded, and shares jumped as much as 17 percent Monday on the prospect of another stock-market listing for the company’s assets.

The new company would be a limited partnership containing Green Plains Inc.’s ethanol transport and storage assets concentrated in 12 midwestern and southeastern states. Full details still aren’t known, as the SEC registration statement was filed under the regulator’s confidentiality clause. That keeps some of the details that might be proprietary hidden from competitors until the IPO is closer.

“The date, number of common units to be sold and the price range for the proposed IPO have not yet been determined and are subject to a number of factors, including market conditions,” Green Plains Inc. wrote in a statement.

A spokeswoman said the company, which produces about 1 billion gallons of ethanol a year, had no additional comment on the matter.

According to the company’s 2014 annual report, Green Plains Inc. operates transportation and storage-related assets that include:

>> 2,200 leased rail tank cars for the transportation of ethanol.

>> 900 leased rail hopper cars for the transportation of distillers grains, or corn leftovers from ethanol production that are sold as cattle feed.

>> Eight fuel terminals in seven states.