Following an ugly proxy battle earlier this year between Las Vegas, Nev.-based natural gas distributor Southwest Gas and activist investor Carl Icahn, a final agreement was reached in May that involved, among other things, selling the company in whole or part. The immediate fallout included ouster of the CEO, four board seats to Icahn, and putting Southwest’s most recent acquisition, MountainWest Pipelines Holding Company, on the market. Southwest last year purchased MountainWest for nearly $2 billion over Icahn’s vehement objection.
Reese Energy Consulting today is following the latest news from Southwest and Tulsa-based pipeline goliath Williams which may well be the true victor in all this with its acquisition of MountainWest for $1.5 billion. In an idyllic addition to Williams’ expansive midstream footprint in the Rocky Mountains, the new bolt-on assets include 2,000 miles of interstate gas pipelines across Utah, Wyo., and Colo., 8 BCFD of capacity, and 56 BCF of total storage including Clay Basin, the largest underground storage reservoir in the region. The deal opens a pathway for Williams’ gas deliveries to Salt Lake City, as well as opportunities to flow next-generation natural gas. Southwest Gas, meanwhile, will take a $350-$425 million loss on the sale.