Written by Vicki Schurman, USDA Public Information Officer
Much of the natural gas consumed in the United States comes from North America. But when you think of natural gas, you don’t usually think of sand. Preferred Sands of Nebraska provides the North American natural gas industry with high quality specialty (frac) sand. It’s used by industry customers in every production basin in the United States and Canada. The sand is injected into a well as part of a process to increase gas flow. The special sand produced in Nebraska holds open fractures in gas-bearing deposits during production.
Recently, USDA Rural Development Deputy Under Secretary Cheryl L. Cook toured the Preferred Sands facility in Genoa, Neb.
USDA Rural Development’s Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan provided American Recovery and Reinvestment Act support that will help the company preserve 50 jobs at Preferred Sands. An additional 50 new jobs for local residents are expected to be created in the next two years.
“USDA Rural Development is in the business of helping businesses like Preferred Sands of Genoa LLC support job creation, and strengthen the local economy,” Cook said. “The guaranteed loan the company is receiving will provide a much needed boost to the local economy by helping to preserve existing jobs and creating even more employment opportunities in the future as the company grows.”
The company provides good jobs for the area. Wages average over $34,000 annually.
Preferred Sands received a $22 million loan from Siemens Financial Services, Inc., backed by an USDA Rural Development guarantee. Leveraged with the loan are $10.1 million from Preferred Sands and $7 million from a GE equipment loan. The funds were used to refinance real estate and equipment at the facility.
USDA Rural Development Deputy Under Secretary Cheryl Cook (fourth from left), Nebraska RD staff, Congressional staff, State Senator Annette Dubas, Lenders, and Borrowers Celebrate the Sustainability of a Rural Business, Preferred Sands of Genoa LLC.