Rice Acquisition completes business combination; forms RNG platform

Rice Acquisition Archaea

Rice Acquisition Corp. (RAC) announced this Wednesday it has completed its business combination with Aria Energy LLC and Archaea Energy LLC. The combination intends to create a leading platform in the renewable natural gas industry.

RAC is a company led by former executives of Rice Energy and EQT, the largest natural gas producer in the U.S. After the combination, RAC will be formally known as Archaea Energy Inc. It will also begin to trade its stocks and warrants at the open market on the New York Stock Exchange. It will do so under the symbols LFG and LFG WS, respectively.

According to the statement, the combination was approved unanimously by RAC’s Board of Directors, as well as by its stockholders. It had more than 99% approval rate on the votes.

The combination had funds of $237 million of cash from RAC’s cash-in-trust; $220 million in proceeds from corporate-level debt; and $300 million from the previously announced private investment in public equity.

It also got $133 million from a project financing program since early 2021, related to Project Assai, a high-Btu RNG facility under construction near Scranton, Pennsylvania. This project would enter operations around the 1Q of 2022.

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Rice Acquisition Corp combines to form leading RNG platform

The remaining proceeds after the combination will be used to fund Archaea Energy Inc’s growth strategy. It includes upgrading Aria’s legacy RNG projects; converting existing landfill gas-to-electric projects to RNG projects; and also developing its substantial backlog of greenfield RNG project opportunities.

Despite the combination into Archaea Energy Inc, Archaea Energy LLC’s senior management team will continue to lead the new company. Moreover, the new company’s BoD, will have seven directors, six of whom are “independent directors” as defined in the NYSE listing standards. The directors will be J. Kyle Derham, Dr. Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, Scott Parkes. The BoD will also have Daniel Joseph Rice, IV, Nick Stork, and James Torgerson.

Nick Stork, Archaea’s Chief Executive Officer, said about the combination. “We are excited to complete our business combination, which enables us to continue rapidly developing our robust inventory of highly economic, low-risk RNG projects.”

Finally, he also remarked. “I am excited about the dedication we will continue to bring to reach our next phase of growth as the only scale producer of renewable natural gas. We are on a mission to break through the status quo and create a new paradigm in RNG development by integrating our team’s expertise with an innovative, technology-driven approach to project development and a differentiated commercial strategy de-risked by long-term contracts.”

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