Southern Energy Inc. closes California generation purchase

Southern Energy Inc., a unit of Southern Company, has completed its $801 million purchase of power plants totaling 3,065 megawatts of generation capacity from San Francisco-based Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

The Pacific Gas and Electric power stations, fueled mostly by natural gas, were sold in a competitive bidding process Nov. 24.

“This rapid financial closing is significant because it demonstrates the importance California has placed on the role of wholesale electricity producers in a deregulated market,” said Southern Energy President Tom Boren. “These assets directly support our strategy for North America and will play a major role in the development of Southern Energy’s national energy supply business.”

Southern Energy is focusing its efforts to buy or build power plants in four U.S. regions where generating assets are necessary to be successful as an energy marketer – the California/Desert Southwest, Texas/Louisiana, the Midwest and the Northeast United States. The company will own power plants in all four areas by October.

With the California transaction, Southern Energy now owns seven gas-fired generation units at the Pittsburg station and two at the Contra Costa station near the San Francisco Bay Delta, along with a gas-fired unit and three jet fuel-powered combustion turbines at Southeast San Francisco’s Potrero plant.

Southern Energy Inc. develops, builds, owns and operates power production and delivery facilities and provides a broad range of services to utilities and industrial companies around the world. Southern Energy supplies energy in 10 countries on four continents. Its Southern Company Energy Marketing unit provides energy trading, marketing and financial services and other energy-related commodities, products and services to customers in North America. Southern Company Energy Marketing, based in Atlanta, is jointly owned by Southern Energy and Vastar Resources Inc.

Southern Company (NYSE: SO), the largest producer of electricity in the United States, is also the parent firm of Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric.