Thursday, November 29, 2007

Watch Out, World! Here Comes "Standard Ethanol"!

It is just astonishing to me how quickly the revered "competitiveness of the market place" becomes a disposable obstacle to monopolism?
From UPI's "Emerging Threats - Analysis" page

Verasun and U.S. BioEnergy to merge

Published: Nov. 29, 2007 at 3:58 PM

BROOKINGS, S.D., Nov. 29 (UPI) -- Verasun Energy Corp. and U.S. BioEnergy Corp. are entering into a merger agreement.

The ethanol producers announced they have entered into an all-stock definitive merger agreement, which has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of both companies.

According to the agreement, VeraSun Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President Donald Endres will remain head of the combined company and U.S. BioEnergy President and CEO Gordon Ommen will serve as chairman. The employees of both companies will be integrated into a combined work force.

The merger is expected to close during the first quarter of 2008 and is projected to have a market value of about $1.5 billion.

Combined, the company will have nine ethanol production facilities in operation and seven additional facilities under construction. By the end of 2008, the company is expected to have a total production capacity of more than 1.6 billion gallons per year.
I suppose some might take it to be a good sign that there are already multi-billion-dollar mergers occurring while the scramble starts to corner the bio-fuels markets, I for one am not so sanguine.

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