Quicksilver Energy LP of Fort Worth, TX, and the members of the Darden family -- including CEO Glenn Darden and Chairman Thomas Darden -- have scrapped talks of a buyout that would have taken the company private, they said Thursday.

The Dardens' proposal was announced last October, and the suitor had retained a financial adviser and counsel and had engaged in discussions with a number of firms regarding equity financing (see Daily GPI, Oct. 26, 2010).

"The Darden family interests have decided not to pursue a take-private transaction at this time because they have concluded that Quicksilver Resources' current capital structure and governance is superior to an alternate private structure for maximizing Quicksilver Resources' exploration and development opportunities," said the Dardens, who own 25% of the company, according to regulatory filings.

Quicksilver shares soared last October following the announcement of a potential deal (see Daily GPI, Oct. 19, 2010) but closed down about 3.5% Thursday at $14.07. In the last 52 weeks the stock got as high as $16.15.

Analysts generally saw a take-private deal with the Dardens as a long shot given high debt levels at Quicksilver and low natural gas prices. The company's main area for growth is the Barnett Shale of North Texas.

Earlier last year Quicksilver had been seen as a possible acquisition target and was rumored to be in discussions with India's Reliance Industries Ltd. (see Daily GPI, July 20, 2010).

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