Berkshire Energy Unit to Issue Debt to Help Fund AltaLink

May 02, 2014 4:44 pm ET

(Updates with profit gain in fourth paragraph.)

May 2 (Bloomberg) -- Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s energy unit plans to issue debt to help fund the $2.9 billion purchase of SNC-Lavalin Group Inc.’s AltaLink.

“Berkshire Hathaway Energy expects to fund the purchase price with capital from its shareholders and by issuing senior unsecured debt,” the power business said today in a regulatory filing.

The energy unit, led by Chief Executive Officer Greg Abel, has been expanding through acquisitions with the blessing of billionaire Warren Buffett, who runs the parent company. Abel last year bought NV Energy, Nevada’s largest electricity utility, for $5.6 billion. The AltaLink deal will help the company expand in electricity transmission in western Canada.

First-quarter net income climbed to $503 million from $438 million a year earlier, according to the energy unit’s filing. NV and a pipeline business contributed to the gain.