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ConocoPhillips-Backed Solaris Prepares IPO

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ConocoPhillips-backed Solaris Midstream Holdings, the water pipeline company serving the US oil and gas fracking industry, is preparing for an initial public offering (IPO) that it hopes will attract sustainability-focused investors.

Solaris is said to have filed confidentially for an initial public offering (IPO) in New York that could value it at more than $1 billion, plus debt, sources said. The listing could come before the end of the year and will seek to attract investors guided by environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) principles, they added.

If successful, Solaris would be the first US pipeline company to debut on the stock market since Rattler Midstream in 2019. Many investors have snubbed the sector because of years of poor returns, especially versus other industries such as technology.

Solaris says it can make fracking environmentally friendly by treating and recycling used water. It said 60 percent of the water it provides for fracking will be recycled by 2022, which is up from 42.1 percent in 2020, with the remainder being groundwater. By 2030, it says nearly all the water it provides will be recycled.

Solaris set these targets as part of a $400 million sustainability-linked bond it issued in March. It used the proceeds to refinance debt and redeem preferred equity held by ConocoPhillips, its biggest customer which also owns a 30 percent stake in the company.

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