United Prairie to add partner, Ceres Solution to acquire one-fifth ownership

TOLONO -- Ceres Solutions, an agricultural cooperative based in Crawfordsville, IN, announced today the company's intent to purchase a significant share of Tolono-based United Prairie LCC.

Ceres Solutions would become 20% owner of the operation and existing stakeholders in United Prairie would have reduced ownership percentages accordingly.

According to today's press release, "The immediate advantages to both organizations would be alignment between two strong midwestern agricultural operations, and potential synergies of procurement, logistics, and other opportunities. Both Ceres Solutions and United Prairie would continue to operate independently in their customer-facing segments and compete in the marketplace."

United Prairie was formed in 1996 combining the crop production divisions of Unity Grain and Grand Prairie Cooperative. Over the past 20 years, the operation has grown to 11 retail locations throughout central Illinois.

"The proposal demonstrates the ongoing importance of developing strong strategic partnerships to continue to serve local farmers with products, services, technologies, and innovation," said Curt Miller, CEO of United Prairie. "United Prairie’s direction has always been to add cooperative owners that enhance our ability to provide the highest level of service and value to the growers we serve."

The transfer of ownership is expected to be completed by August 1.

Jeff Troike, CEO of Ceres Solutions added, "We’re pleased to take this next step in making an investment that will benefit both Ceres Solutions and United Prairie."

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