Arkansas company sells N.D. ethanol plant for $173M

Farm Forum

HANKINSON, N.D. (AP) — The new owners of an ethanol plant in the southeastern North Dakota city of Hankinson aren’t planning any major changes at the facility, the manager of the alternative fuel factory says.

Arkansas-based fuel supplier Murphy USA Inc. has sold Hankinson Renewable Energy LLC for $173 million to Guardian Hankinson LLC. The deal closed late last year, with President and CEO Andrew Clyde calling it “a major step in executing our strategy to exit non-core businesses while realizing significant value for our shareholders.”

Guardian is a joint venture involving Minnesota-based Heartland Corn Products and Chippewa Valley Ethanol, Nebraska-based KAAPA Ethanol and South Dakota-based Dakota Ethanol, the Daily News of Wahpeton reported.

Plant Manager Neil Crocker called the transition “seamless,” with no changes in staff or operations.

“One of the attractions to the facility were the people who are there,” said Chuck Woodside, KAAPA Ethanol’s CEO and Guardian’s board chairman. “We think there is a great group of people there and we want to build on what they have.”

The plant was built in 2008, and converts about 130,000 bushels of corn into about 365,000 gallons of ethanol every day, according to Crocker.