Gastar Exploration Inc. has extended its marketing efforts to sell the company entirely, announcing recently that it would accept proposals from interested parties until next month as it continues with Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.
The company entered a restructuring agreement last month with its largest shareholder and only funded-debt creditor, Ares Management LLC, and filed for bankruptcy shortly thereafter. While the restructuring would allow it to wipe out $300 million of debt and provide new financing, Gastar is still pursuing a fast sale.
The pre-packaged bankruptcy came after months of efforts to sell the company. It previously distributed a process letter seeking proposals and establishing an Oct. 1 deadline to submit them, but the company didn’t receive any “actionable” bids. Gastar is again accepting proposals until Dec. 17.
The company is now encouraging all-cash offers and a deal that can close quickly, or by the time it’s restructuring plan is expected to take effect following the bankruptcy proceedings in early January.
“Any proposals predicated on restructuring or modifying Gastar’s existing capital structure or any proposals to combine Gastar with another entity where some or all of the merger consideration is proposed to be equity in the combined company will very likely be rejected as not viable,” Gastar said earlier this month when it extended the deadline for proposals.
Gastar became a Midcontinent pure-player in 2016 after it sold its Appalachian Basin assets to Tug Hill Inc. for $80 million. It operates in the Sooner Trend of the Anadarko Basin, mostly in Canadian and Kingfisher counties, aka the STACK.
The company produced 550,000 boe in the third quarter, down from 572,000 boe in the year-ago quarter. It also suffered financially during the period, reporting a net loss of $21.1 million (minus 10 cents/share), compared to a net loss of $15.9 million (minus 8 cents) in 3Q2017. The company has recorded net losses through the first nine months of this year.