SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA, US — Aurora Cooperative Elevator Co. closed on its agreement to purchase a 74% ownership interest in Pacific Aurora, LLC from Pacific Ethanol, for $52.8 million.

After working capital adjustments and settlement of certain payables between the parties, Pacific Ethanol received at closing $20.2 million of cash, before fees and $16.5 million in promissory notes.

“Aurora Cooperative is pleased to protect these local destination and rail markets for our farmer owners by gaining full ownership of these ethanol plants, elevator, and rail assets,” said Chris Vincent, president and chief executive officer of Aurora Cooperative. “Through this acquisition Aurora Cooperative will safeguard our markets and be ‘Tougher Together’ for our owners, employees and the communities we serve.”

Before the sale Aurora Cooperative held a 26% ownership interest in Pacific Aurora, LLC.

The transaction includes two ethanol production facilities with a combined annual production capacity of 145 million gallons, a grain elevator with storage capacity of 4.1 million bushels and integrated rail facilities located in Aurora, Nebraska, US.

“We are pleased to have completed our sale to Aurora Cooperative and its farmer owners, which represents a significant step in achieving our strategic initiatives to reduce debt and continue to focus our resources on delivering high value alcohol and feed products in the markets we serve,” said Neil Koehler, president and CEO of Pacific Ethanol.

Headquartered in Aurora, Nebraska, US, Aurora Cooperative has more than 700 employees across 82 locations in seven states providing service in grain, agronomy, animal nutrition and energy. In 2019, Aurora Cooperative had total sales of over $1 billion, serviced more than 4 million acres, merchandised over 120 million bushels of grain, and had over 34,000 equity members.