REG looks to acquire idled Minnesota biodiesel plant

By Bryan Sims | June 21, 2011

Ames, Iowa-based biodiesel producer Renewable Energy Group Inc., and its wholly-owned subsidiary REG Albert Lea LLC, entered into Asset Purchase Agreements with SoyMor Cooperative and SoyMor Biodiesel LLC to acquire SoyMor’s idled 30 MMgy biodiesel facility in Albert Lea, Minn., according to an 8-K filing on June 13 to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

According to the filing, REG would issue 1,850,000 newly-issued shares of its common stock and assume certain liabilities in exchange for the transfer of substantially all the assets of SoyMor Biodiesel LLC and SoyMor Cooperative’s soy lecithin assets, which are collocated with the biodiesel production facility, and are also idled. Closing of the deal is contingent on customary closing conditions, including the approval of SoyMor’s members.

REG spokeswoman Alicia Clancy declined to comment as to when REG expects the transaction to close and what its plans would be with the facility once acquired.

In 2009, SoyMor Biodiesel LLC received a $25 million loan from the USDA to diversify its operations by purchasing equipment that would enable it to convert multiple types of feedstocks, including an unrefined corn oil waste product from nearby ethanol facilities, into biodiesel. The plant’s original configuration was built to exclusively process soybean oil. The plant originally opened in 2005, but high feedstock costs forced SoyMor to suspend operations in spring 2008.

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