Chesapeake Energy agreed to buy MC Panhandle Corp., a whollyowned subsidiary of Occidental Petroleum for $105 million cash forestimated proved reserves of about 100 Bcf in the West PanhandleField in Carson, Gray, Hutchinson and Moore counties of the TexasPanhandle. The reserves are 100% gas, have an estimatedreserve-to-production index of eight years, and are 85% proveddeveloped producing. During 1997, the wells produced about 13 Bcf(36 MMcf/d) net to Occidental’s interest from 256 wells, of whichall but two were Oxy operated wells. Chesapeake will assumeoperations of the acquired wells and will own an average workinginterest and net revenue interest of 99.5% and 85.2%, respectively.The transaction is effective Jan. 1, with closing scheduled May 29.With this purchase and pro forma for Chesapeake’s pending Hugotonand DLB transactions, Chesapeake’s estimated proved reserves willincrease to about 1,050 Bcfe. The Hugoton Energy Panhandleproperties to be acquired by Chesapeake were originally acquiredfrom Oxy in 1992. Chesapeake CEO Aubrey K. McClendon, said, “asresult, we expect to be able to operate these reunited propertiesvery efficiently out of Hugoton’s existing Pampa, TX, field office.For example, pro forma for these acquisitions, we expect our directproduction costs in the Texas Panhandle, excluding productiontaxes, to average approximately $0.30 per Mcf. These arehigh-margin, low-maintenance wells that we believe will provideaccretive results to our cash flow in 1998 and beyond.”
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