November 17, 2008 / 9:48 PM / in 9 years

UPDATE 2-TransCanada to issue C$1.16 bln of stock

(Adds background on financing options)

CALGARY, Alberta, Nov 17 (Reuters) - TransCanada Corp TRP.TO said on Monday it plans to issue up to C$1.16 billion ($950 million) of stock to fund major projects like the Keystone oil pipeline, marking its second billion-dollar offering in half a year.

TransCanada, the country’s biggest pipeline operator, said it plans to issue 30.5 million common shares, at C$33 each, against a backdrop of weak financial markets.

The company said it could offer the underwriting syndicate, led by RBC Capital Markets, BMO Capital Markets and TD Securities, another 4.58 million shares at the same price for up to 30 days after the close of the financing.

In May, TransCanada issued C$1.1 billion of stock to cover its acquisition of the Ravenswood power plant in New York and construction of Keystone, the first phase of which has a price tag of $5.2 billion.

Company executives said in October they had hoped to establish new bank credit lines to pay for construction of the oil pipeline to Oklahoma from Alberta.

But in an investor seminar early this month, as the global credit crunch wore on, Chief Financial Officer Greg Lohnes said equity financing was one option for raising money, along with term debt, subordinated capital and asset sales.

TransCanada shares fell C$1.10, or 3 percent, to C$34.53 on the Toronto Stock Exchange, having dropped 11 percent in the past 12 months. It announced the stock offering after the market closed.

$1=$1.22 Canadian Reporting by Jeffrey Jones; editing by Rob Wilson

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