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Ceres, Co-Alliance merger to form Keystone Cooperative

February 12, 2024 By     0 Comments

Indiana-based agriculture and energy cooperatives Ceres Solutions Cooperative and Co-Alliance Cooperative plan to merge on March 1 under the name Keystone Cooperative. Both boards and memberships have overwhelmingly approved the merger.

According to Ceres and Co-Alliance, the merger creates a farmer-owned cooperative focused on delivering an unmatched customer experience, with the resources needed to support farmer-owners as they grow into the future.

Keystone Cooperative will serve customers in Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Illinois. It will have four core divisions, including energy, agronomy, grain, and swine and animal nutrition. Keystone will employ over 1,700 team members throughout the states served, with expected annual revenue of $3 billion.

The boards have chosen Kevin Still, president and CEO of Co-Alliance, as the president and CEO of Keystone Cooperative. Ceres Solutions CEO Jeff Troike will become the executive vice president of Keystone Cooperative alongside Co-Alliance’s executive vice president, Scott Logue.

“Keystone Cooperative brings together two financially strong, legacy-rich and highly successful cooperatives. This historic merger creates a cooperative that is equipped to navigate the ever-changing markets of today’s agriculture and energy industries,” Still says. “This powerful combination will build a cooperative that maximizes efficiencies, capitalizes on technology and has the resources to enhance our customer experience while preparing for the needs of our future stakeholders.”

Troike adds, “Our membership has recognized the value of this combination, and we are looking forward to achieving our promise of a cooperative that is focused on the success of our members, the vitality of our rural communities and providing an unparalleled return for our farmer-owners.”

The cooperative also announced leaders of its respective divisions. Eric Adair, vice president – energy; Todd Masten, vice president – liquid fuels; and Mike Hayden, assistant vice president – propane, will lead the energy division.

The merger announcement comes after a due-diligence process and the collaborative joint venture Endeavor Ag & Energy, which serves central Michigan in agronomy, propane and feed.

Rick Brubaker, chairman of the Ceres board of directors, underscored the value of the merger, saying, “Our successful partnership with the Endeavor business in Michigan helped exhibit the collaborative capacity of our organizations. We look forward to seeing this team find even more synergies with our broader businesses.”

Tim Burke, chairman of the Co-Alliance board of directors, affirmed the merger opportunity, stating, “This merger is a testament to our shared vision and unwavering commitment to delivering exceptional value to our customers. Together, we will create a stronger, more resilient cooperative that will remain successful for our future generations.”

Keystone Cooperative will be headquartered in Indianapolis.

About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at brichesson@northcoastmedia.net or 216-706-3748.

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