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Kinder Morgan buyout

Scott Tong Aug 28, 2006


BRIAN WATT: 10 years ago, executive Richard Kinder left Enron well before, well, you know. And Mister Kinder’s done quite well. He formed a pipeline company, and today the billionaire CEO’s leading a buyout effort to take the publicly traded firm private. Marketplace’s Scott Tong reports.

SCOTT TONG: As CEO of Kinder Morgan, Richard Kinder pays himself $1 a year.

Doesn’t seem to hurt, though: today’s buyout is worth 15 billion, the largest pipeline takeover ever. The acquirers include Mister Kinder, other company executives and directors, and Goldman Sachs.

Energy analyst Fadel Gheit is with Oppenheimer and company. He says with energy prices where they are, it’s a good time to be running pipelines.

He calls them the arteries of the economy, and they’ve been neglected for decades.

FADEL GHEIT: If we have all the oil and gas that we can hope for and we don’t have adequate transmission lines in the pipeline to take this oil and gas production from the field to the marketplace, it really means nothing.

Kinder Morgan owns 43,000 miles of pipes which carry natural gas and crude oil. And even before today’s deal, it was the largest in the industry by market value.

I’m Scott Tong for Marketplace.

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