Western Refining buying Minnesota refinery

Western Refining Inc., El Paso, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the general partner interest and a 38.7% limited partner interest in Northern Tier Energy, which operates the 89,500-b/d St. Paul Park Refinery in Minnesota.

Western Refining will acquire the interests for total consideration of $775 million from ACON Investments LLC and TPG Capital LP, which acquired the refinery from Marathon Petroleum Co. LP for an estimated $900 million in 2010 (OGJ Online, Oct. 6, 2010). ACON and TPG formed Northern Tier Energy and took the company public as a master limited partnership based in Ridgefield, Conn., in July 2012.

Limited partner units not acquired by Western Refining are publicly traded.

In addition to the refinery, Western Refining will acquire a 17% interest in a 455,000-b/d crude oil pipeline; products terminals, storage tanks, rail facilities, and Mississippi River dockage; and retail assets including 163 company-operated convenience stores and 74 franchised convenience stores mainly in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

The refinery, which has fluid catalytic cracking and reforming capacities, processes 75% light and 25% heavy feedstocks.

Western Refining operates refineries in El Paso (128,000 b/d) and near Gallup, NM (23,000 b/d).

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