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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — NorthWestern Corp. announced Wednesday it has submitted applications with state and federal regulators seeking approval of its sale to Babcock & Brown Infrastructure.

Northwestern and the Sydney, Australia-based BBI have filed applications with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, public service commissions in Montana and Nebraska and the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission.

"We look forward to working with all of the regulatory agencies to successfully complete this process," said Steve Boulton, chief executive officer of BBI.

In late April, BBI offered $2.2 billion, the equivalent of $37 a share, for NorthWestern's electricity and natural gas distribution system in the three states.

When the deal is complete, NorthWestern's common stock will no longer be publicly traded and the company will be a subsidiary of BBI.

"We look forward to demonstrating how BBI's acquisition will complement NorthWestern's existing strategy and long tradition of providing safe and reliable service for our customers and communities," Mike Hanson, president and CEO of NorthWestern, said in a statement. "This transaction simply allows NorthWestern to exchange one set of shareholders with a short-term outlook for owners with a long-term strategy and vision of the future."

The transaction, also subject to NorthWestern shareholder approval, is expected to close next year.

NorthWestern, doing business as NorthWestern Energy, provides electricity and natural gas to over 628,000 customers in South Dakota, Montana and Nebraska.

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