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Pacific Ethanol Inc., a producer and marketer of low-carbon renewable fuels and high-quality alcohol products in the United States, earlier this month closed on its agreement to sell its 74 percent ownership interest in Pacific Aurora LLC to Aurora Cooperative Elevator Co. for a total valuation of $52.8 million.
"Aurora Cooperative is pleased to protect these local destination and rail markets for our farmer owners by gaining full ownership of these ethanol plants, elevator and rail assets," said Chris Vincent, Aurora Cooperative's president and chief executive officer, in a press release.
For Pacific Ethanol, the sale marks a "significant step in achieving our strategic initiatives to reduce debt and continue to focus our resources on delivering high-value alcohol and feed products in the markets we serve," said Neil Koehler, Pacific Ethanol's president and CEO.
The company received at closing $20.2 million in cash, before fees and $16.5 million in promissory notes. About $14.5 million of cash proceeds will be used to pay principal payments to its lender, CoBank.
Headquartered in Aurora, Nebraska, Aurora Cooperative is one of the largest agricultural retailers in the nation. The cooperative has more than 700 employees across 82 locations in seven states.