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MDU Completes Exit From E&P Business

MDU Resources Group Inc. has sold its remaining marketed oil and natural gas production assets, signaling the end of subsidiary Fidelity Exploration and Production Co., the company announced last week.

Fidelity, based out of Denver, is expected to close its offices by mid-2016.

Bismarck, ND-based MDU had made clear its intentions to get out of the exploration and production (E&P) business late last year when it began initiating a series of deals (see Shale Daily, Aug. 4, 2015). The E&P segment had been racking up sizeable operating losses amid the commodity price downturn (see Shale Daily, Nov. 3, 2015).

“This completes the final sale of our Fidelity properties,” MDU CEO David Goodin said. “Exiting the E&P business lowers our risk profile, and it allows us to focus more on growing our other business operations.”

In total, MDU said it generated roughly $500 million from its oil and gas asset sales, which included assets in the Bakken Shale in North Dakota, assets in the Baker and Bowdoin plays and in the Cedar Creek Anticline in Montana, Powder River Basin assets in Wyoming, Paradox Basin assets in Utah, and its “Greater Gulf Coast” assets located primarily in Texas.

The company said it will use proceeds from the asset sales to repay debt related to Fidelity. Any remaining revenues will go toward MDU’s $1.5 billion, five-year capital expenditure program for its utility operations. MDU’s utility companies serve more than 1 million customers across North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Minnesota, Montana, Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

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