Brookfield Infrastructure Partners (BIP), a publicly listed fund of Brookfield Asset Management (BAM), is set to acquire Niska Gas Storage Partners and Niska Gas Storage Management, its managing member, for approximately $911.9 million.
In addition to acquiring Niska Gas Storage Partners’ outstanding common units – 53 percent of which are held by affiliates of private equity firm Riverstone – for $4.225 each, BIP will also be assuming Niska’s debt.
Niska’s board of directors, the board’s conflicts committee and Riverstone’s affiliates have approved the merger agreement, which is expected to close in the second half of 2016 pending customary closing conditions as well as approval by the California Public Utilities Commission.
Under the terms of the agreement, Brookfield has agreed to lend up to $50 million to Niska under a short-term credit facility to be used for working capital purposes, according to a statement.
Based in Radnor, Pennsylvania, Niska is the largest independent owner and operator of natural gas storage in North America. It owns and operates the AECO Hub in Alberta, Canada; Wild Goose in California; and Salt Plains in Oklahoma. In addition to these three facilities, Niska also contracts for natural gas storage capacity in the US mid-continent, according to the statement.
“Niska appreciates its equity holders’ support over the years in assembling and operating some of the premier gas storage facilities in North America,” said Bill Shea, the company’s chairman, president and chief executive. “We look forward to Niska’s future association with Brookfield and continuing our world-class operation of the facilities.”
Cross-listed on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges, BIP owns and operates utilities, transport, and energy assets worldwide. In October 2013, BAM announced that BIF II, Brookfield Infrastructure’s latest offering, had closed on $7 billion, exceeding its initial target by $2 billion and becoming the largest infrastructure investment fund raised in 2013.
In addition to infrastructure, BAM also focuses on property, renewable power, and private equity. It has approximately $200 billion in assets under management.