NET Power LLC (NET Power) and Rice Acquisition Corp. II have added $275 million of PIPE commitments in connection with their proposed $1.5 billion merger. A PIPE, or private investment in public equity, is a funding mechanism that allows investors to buy stock directly from a company at a reduced price.
Occidental has also increased its commitment to the PIPE by $250 million, bringing its total investment to $350 million. The Rice family has committed an additional $25 million to the PIPE, bringing their total investment to $125 million. Rice Acquisition Corp. II (RONI) is led by former Rice Energy CEO Danny Rice.
The new company, which combines NET Power and Rice Acquisition, aims to deliver clean, reliable and low-cost power from natural gas.
The new commitments bring the expected gross proceeds of the business combination to $845 million for NET Power, consisting of approximately $345 million from RONI's trust account (assuming no redemptions), and approximately $500 million from the PIPE raised entirely at $10 per share of common stock.
If no RONI shareholders exercise their redemption rights, the combined company is expected to have a market capitalization in excess of $2 billion.
Since announcing the transaction in December 2022, NET Power has continued to make progress towards commercialization of its utility-scale power plant, including FEED commencement on the Occidental-hosted Serial Number 1 project near Odessa, Texas.
In support of the plant, NET Power expects Occidental will be a key offtaker of the clean power generated by SN1. Furthermore, it is anticipated that Occidental will manage the transportation, storage and utilization of the captured CO2 from SN1.
"We believe NET Power's technology can accelerate emissions reductions in our existing operations and ultimately supply emissions-free power to the Direct Air Capture facilities and sequestration hubs we are developing," said Vicki Hollub, president and CEO of Occidental. "Our additional $250 million investment in NET Power demonstrates our conviction in NET Power's technology and mission to globally deploy affordable and reliable zero-emissions energy."
Following Occidental’s additional commitment, the company’s ownership stake in the combined company will increase to approximately 39%, assuming no redemptions.
Incoming NET Power CEO Danny Rice said, "We're confident that NET Power's patented power plant technology is the only technology that can deliver all-in-one clean, reliable and low-cost power, and the more time we spend with the NET Power team and the technology, the more excited we get. We are pleased with the progress to date on SN1 and we consider Occidental an ideal partner in the CO2 offtake, carbon management and sequestration space. Now more than ever, we believe that the world needs NET Power, and this additional capital from Occidental and the Rice family enhances our ability to begin delivering the energy trifecta at global scale this decade."
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