It hasn’t made a lot noise shortly, however one among South Carolina’s largest non-public firms has a considerable deal clanking round within the pipeline — actually.
An affiliate of The InterTech Group Inc. has considerably dialed up its long-held stake in a small Virginia pure fuel distributor.
A belief managed by Anita Zucker, CEO of the North Charleston-based international manufacturing conglomerate, not too long ago snapped up shares valued at about $21 million in RGC Resources Inc. The purchases boosted its possession to 14.1 % of the publicly traded power utility, which serves about 63,000 clients within the larger Roanoke Valley space and netted $10 million in earnings on income of $75 million throughout its 2021 fiscal 12 months.
As a part of the deal, RGC was required to broaden the dimensions of its board and appoint a consultant of InterTech’s selecting to fill the brand new seat. It picked Robert Johnston, the Jenkins Avenue firm’s go-to chief technique officer.
Johnston, who was formally named a director April 7, couldn’t be reached for remark final week. In an announcement he emphasised InterTech’s prolonged and substantial possession in RGC.
“This investment further solidifies our long-term belief in the company’s strategy and utility operations,” he said.
InterTech has put money into an eclectic assortment of publicly traded businesses over the years — from a New England power company to a Canadian ice-rink owner to an Irish fruit and produce giant.
It disclosed it was amassing shares of the 139-year-old RGC in 2010, when it was required to report its holdings after crossing the 5 % threshold. At the time, it cited a beneficiant dividend and stable administration as a part of its rationale.
Its newest acquisition of 1 million shares for an excellent $20 million was negotiated straight with the utility via an settlement dated March 28.
Weeks earlier, InterTech started shopping for up smaller blocks of the inventory in the father or mother of Roanoke Gas Co. by itself, via a sequence of open market transactions, in line with a submitting with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
RGC chief govt Paul Nester mentioned the most recent spherical of purchases by its longtime South Carolina shareholder “positions us well as we continue Roanoke Gas’ system modernization and growth strategy.”
Also, he added, the funding will assist his firm “in honoring its commitment” to finish the Mountain Valley Pipeline that it’s constructing with 4 companions.
A subsidiary of RGC is a 1 % accomplice within the mission, a $6.2 billion endeavor that is almost completed however is not fairly a certain wager.
Approved in 2017, the controversial line often known as “MVP” runs 303 miles, from northwestern West Virginia to southern Virginia. It will transport about 2 billion cubic toes of pure fuel a day — if it is accomplished.
The mission is being contested by a couple of dozen opposition teams over its influence on local weather change and different environmental issues. The Sierra Club not too long ago known as the 42-inch fuel conduit “unnecessary” and “reckless,” in line with a report in The Roanoke Times.
The brief conflict between Britain and Argentina over management of the Falkland Islands got here to an finish on June 14, 1982.
Construction not too long ago stalled over allowing setbacks and court docket rulings in January and February.
Supporters, together with U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, a strong West Virginia swing voter and chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, have countered that the almost prepared piece of home infrastructure is required greater than ever given the sudden squeeze that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has placed on the worldwide power market.
“And I know some might bristle at investing in fossil fuel infrastructure as a long-term asset,” the Democrat mentioned final month in ready remarks to his fellow Senate committee members. “But let me let you know — the Mountain Valley Pipeline might be accomplished in 4 months if it was lastly given the inexperienced gentle.”
In its final public remark to traders, RGC mentioned in late February that it was assessing the monetary fallout of the latest authorized and regulatory setbacks however that it’s prone to e-book a write-off for this quarter.
It stays unclear when work will resume and the way a lot additional the development invoice will climb.
InterTech isn’t the one investor loading up on RGC amid the heightened sense of uncertainty that is coursing via the pipeline deal. A longtime particular person shareholder not too long ago added $2 million to his holdings, whereas funding supervisor T. Rowe Price not too long ago purchased inventory totaling $4 million.
Contact John McDermott at 843-937-5572 or observe him on Twitter at @byjohnmcdermott