Columbia Pipeline Floats IOUs to Pay Down Debt, Fund Dividend

NOTE: NiSource/Columbia called MDN to clarify that the IPO earlier this year was for Columbia Pipeline Partners, NOT Columbia Pipeline Group as we had incorrectly stated in the original version of this story. Thank you NiSource! We’ve slightly modified the opening paragraph below to make it accurate.

The mad dash to raise cash continues in both the upstream and midstream sectors. Today it’s a company in the midstream (pipelines and process plants). In February of this year, NiSource spun off Columbia Pipeline Partners into it’s own company with a $1.1 billion initial public offering of “units” (think shares of stock, see Columbia Pipeline IPO Blows By Rosiest Expectations, Nets $1.1B). Columbia Pipeline Group (of which Columbia Pipeline Partners owns 15.7%) will become its own company and trade under its own stock ticker (CPGX) starting July 1. Yesterday Columbia Pipeline Group announced they are floating a series of IOUs, or “senior notes” looking to raise an eye-popping $2.75 billion. What will they use it for? A little over $1 billion will be used to pay off “intercompany debt” ahead of the separation. Another $1.45 billion will be used for a “special dividend to NiSource in connection with its planned separation from NiSource.” The balance of ~$300 million will be used for “general corporate purposes”–paperclips and such…

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