Companies partner to acquire facility on historic Beaumont site

Courtney Pedersen | December 5, 2022 (Beaumont Enterprise) – Three companies have partnered to acquire a local natural gas storage facility. Caliche Development Partners II, Orion Infrastructure Capital and GCM Grosvenor joined forces to acquire Golden Triangle Storage, Inc., a natural gas storage facility on Spindletop in Beaumont.

“We believe the investment opportunity for underground storage is robust in light of market dynamics and ongoing energy transition initiatives across the globe,” GCM Grosvenor Managing Director Matthew Rinklin said in the news release. “The Caliche team has a proven track record of developing critical storage infrastructure for a range of customers across fuel types, and we look forward to growing their platform alongside our partners at OIC.”

The Golden Triangle Storage acquisition, as well the partnership's anticipated purchase of Central Valley Gas Storage in Atlanta, will allow the group to target "two regions with increasing demand for storage to support variable power loads, natural gas liquefaction and high penetrations of renewable resources," according to the release.

"Acquisition amounts funded and/or anticipated to be funded by Orion Infrastructure Capital, GCM Grosvenor and Caliche management collectively total $186 million, which represents the aggregate purchase price of both GTS and CVGS, plus working capital and other adjustments," the release states.

The Golden Triangle Storage transaction closed on Nov. 18, according to the release.

"(Golden Triangle Storage has) been in continuous safe operations for about the last 12 years," Caliche CEO Dave Marchese said. "We are buying the company which means that the employees will be staying, we're excited about that. We think it's a safe, well run facility and we're pretty excited about what it brings as far as opportunities."

Marchese said natural gas at Golden Triangle Storage is stored in caverns and while the company is permitted for nine, only two currently exist.

"To add natural gas caverns, we would have to go to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to add interstate caverns for natural gas storage," he said. "The site is permitted for storage of both gases and liquids by the Railroad Commission, so we could store other products there including hydrogen is something we're very interested in given the market interest there and other industrial gases as well as potentially interstate natural gas."

Marchese said the currently-operating natural gas storage facility is connected by two 24-inch pipelines to seven different inter and intrastate pipelines.

"The Caliche team has a proven history of operating on the Spindletop salt dome, where Golden Triangle Storage is located, and will leverage its expertise from its prior storage business — Coastal Caverns — for the success of both facilities," the release states.

Marchese said Caliche is excited to do business in Beaumont again.