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Legacy Enters East Texas in Natural Gas Deal with Anadarko, Western Gas

Legacy Reserves LP on Monday cinched up the purchase of a package of natural gas assets that give it entry into East Texas through a double deal with Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and Western Gas Partners LP.

The properties were secured for a combined $440 million, the Midland, TX operator noted. The transactions, set to close in the third quarter, include estimated proved reserves of 420 Bcfe. The properties are 100% natural gas, 95% proved developed producing and 95% operated. Estimated 3Q2015 output is 70 MMcfe/d, with a proved reserves-to-production ratio of 16.4 years.

Included in the transaction are 567 miles of high-pressure pipeline and low-pressure gathering lines, as well as a 502 MMcfe/d processing plant with access to five major gas markets. Cash flow is expected to be around $60 million.

The transactions allowed the master limited partnership "to use our ample liquidity to position ourselves for success in 2016 and beyond," CEO Paul Horne said. "This acquisition represents a material entry into East Texas, a region we have wanted to enter for several years due to its long-lived, low-decline, low-cost nature and high potential for bolt-on acquisitions. These high-quality assets combined with the upside optionality of recompletions and a contango gas-curve make this a very attractive acquisition for us."

The gas gathering and processing additions "will be a new operational venture for us, and one that we are confident in our abilities to execute with the anticipated addition of personnel experienced in the operation of the acquired assets. We believe these assets will provide a stable cash flow stream and some synergies with our upstream assets that would not exist with an outside operator."

In conjunction with the transaction, Legacy entered into costless gas swaps. The 2016-2019 hedges represent an average of 83% of current production from the acquisition.

Also Monday, an operating subsidiary of Legacy entered into an agreement with funds managed by TPG Special Situations Partners (TSSP) to fund horizontal development in its Spraberry, Wolfcamp and Bone Spring rights in the Permian Basin. The primary acreage covered by the arrangement is around 6,000 net acres in the Texas counties of Howard, Reagan and Crockett, and in Lea County, NM. Legacy estimates there are more than 150 horizontal locations requiring $700 million-plus of capital.

Legacy would convey to TSSP an undivided 87.5% of its working interest in the properties and together they would establish tranches of proposed horizontal locations. TSSP agreed to fund 95% of drilling and completion costs over a specific period of time.

TSSP has initially committed $150 million to fund the first tranche which, based on Legacy's anticipated two to three rig drilling program, would take about one year. Additionally, TSSP has the right to participate in any future identified horizontal development opportunities in the Delaware and Midland Basins under the same economic terms.

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