Alliant Energy Corp. signed agreements to sell its Minnesota electric distribution and natural gas businesses. The power distribution business in the state will be sold to Southern Minnesota Energy Cooperative (SMEC), a combined group of 12 neighboring electric cooperatives.
SMEC and Minnesota Energy Resources currently serve customers adjacent to Alliant Energy's utility operations in the state. SMEC-member utilities currently serve nearly 135,000 electric customers and Minnesota Energy Resources provides natural gas service to about 214,000 customers in Minnesota.
Alliant Energy serves 43,000 electric customers and 10,600 natural gas customers spread over a footprint of nearly 15,000 square miles in southern Minnesota. Alliant Energy's Minnesota operations represent less than four percent of the company's overall customer base.
Alliant's Minnesota natural gas business will be sold to Minnesota Energy Resources Corp., a unit of Integrys Energy Group, Inc.
The combined sales price of the electric and natural gas assets is about $128 million, subject to customary closing adjustments. The electric sales agreement also includes a ten-year purchased power agreement (PPA) between SMEC and Alliant Energy's Iowa electric utility.
With the PPA agreement, Alliant Energy's current Minnesota electric customers will continue to receive energy from a diverse portfolio of power generation resources while future electric generation needs and plans for Alliant Energy's Iowa utility are unchanged. Alliant Energy will continue to operate its electric generation facilities in Minnesota.
The sales of the company assets require state and federal approvals, which are expected to occur in six to twelve months. Wells Fargo Securities, LLC served as Alliant Energy's exclusive financial advisor on the electric transaction.