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Dakota Plains Holdings, Inc. (DAKP) Well-Positioned to Exploit Bakken Activity with Expanded Transloading Capacity and Frac Sand Terminal

Dakota Plains Holdings, the MN-headquartered provider of broad-spectrum crude oil offtake services spanning marketing, transloading, and trucking of crude and related products, is squarely focused on growing their Williston Basin (Bakken and Three Forks) centric operations through judicious capacity expansion of their optimally located New Town facility in Mountrail County, North Dakota.

With a sizeable and proprietary fleet of trucks, as well as over 1k railroad tank cars at their disposal (directly and indirectly) through existing JVs, it is little wonder DAKP pushed record volumes in their marketing/transloading figures for November 2013, with multiple daily gross rates exceeding 36k barrels per day. Direct connection to partner Canadian Pacific’s Class 1 Railway ensures a bright future for DAKP as they continue to serve Bakken/Three Forks interests well on into the future and their now culminating Pioneer Terminal JV expansion project should improve overall throughput/profitability handsomely.

Markets should be getting an update from the company any day now on the Pioneer Terminal commissioning, which adds two 8.3k foot loop tracks, each capable of handling a 120 car unit train, as well as two crude storage tanks totaling 180k bbls in capacity. The rapidly developing inbound oilfield products activity at the Pioneer Terminal is also key for DAKP here, with the New Town facility’s four existing 2.5k foot tracks to be used in support of inbound oilfield supplies like frac sand, something for which the company is currently constructing a $15M terminal that (slated for completion in May of this year). The 750k tons per year frac sand terminal, announced earlier in 2013 and fully funded by top North American non-metallic industrial minerals producer, UNIMIN Corp., will carry some 8k tons of fixed sand storage, as well as featuring enclosed transloading.

The Pioneer Terminal expansion incorporates a high-speed loading facility capable of handling 10 rail cars at the same time, in addition to transfer stations for organizing crude coming in from trucks and local gathering pipelines, with one such pipeline already in service and a projected 8k BOPD feed rate. The fact that they executed this new expansion via JV, incurring only half the$50M price tag and are now in the final stages of completing a transition whereby DAKP will assume management of the Pioneer Terminal, with over 11k work-hours and zero lost time due to safety incidents, while also bringing the project in under budget, speaks volumes about the project’s development team. President and COO of DAKP, Gabe Claypool, who helped spearhead the company’s initial doubling of on-site capacity and creation of their key marketing/trucking JVs, was instrumental as the Pioneer Terminal expansion project team leader in achieving such success.

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