Citing “intense” competition in the race to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) and an urgent need to secure liquidity, Australia-based LNG Ltd. (LNGL) is considering a takeover offer from a private Singapore-based firm that would include two proposed projects for the Gulf Coast and Canada.
Articles from takeover
Calling QEP Resources Inc. “deeply undervalued,” two affiliates of activist shareholder Elliott Management Corp., one of the company’s largest shareholders, offered to buy the onshore exploration and production company outright and take it private in a cash deal valued at more than $2 billion.
Calgary-based Ensign Energy Services Inc., one of the leading land-based drillers in North America, has launched a hostile bid to take over its cross-town rival Trinidad Drilling Ltd. for C$947 million (US$720 million), including debt.
TransCanada Corp. announced a US$848-million offer Monday to complete its takeover of Columbia Pipeline Group by buying up all the corporate ownership units of an investment affiliate.
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. has completed its takeover of Plains Exploration & Production Co., with a total value of $16.2 billion, including $9.7 billion in debt. The transaction, completed Friday, included a payment of about $3.3 billion in cash ($25/Plains share), 91 million shares of Freeport common stock ($2.9 billion) and a special cash dividend of $3.00/share (see Daily GPI, May 21). The acquisition of related affiliate McMoRan Exploration Co. for close to $3 billion is expected to close on Monday (June 3), subject to shareholder approval. Former Plains Chairman and CEO Jim Flores was named co-vice chairman and CEO/president of subsidiary Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas LLC. Flores also is to be part of newly formed office of the chairman with Chairman Jim Bob Moffett and Vice Chairman Richard C. Adkerson, who also is CEO/president. Flores had served as chairman/CEO of Plains since its inception in 2002; he became president in 2004. Former Plains directors Alan Buckwalter and Thomas A. Fry also have joined the board. Buckwalter is the retired chair of JPMorgan Chase Bank, South Region, and Fry retired as president of the National Ocean Industries Association after serving from 2000 to 2010; he also previously directed the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.
Encana Corp. is searching for a permanent CEO after Randy Eresman, who had spent his entire career at the Calgary company, suddenly resigned earlier this month. Director Clayton H. Woitas, who is CEO of privately held Range Royalty Management Ltd., remains interim president and CEO until a successor is named.
With the clock running out on an A45 cents/share takeover offer from Aurora Oil & Gas Ltd., directors of Eureka Energy, are being coy, advising investors to sit tight until its June 15 expiration “as there is the potential for important developments.” Indeed, it was reported that privately held Lonestar Resources Inc. had made a competing offer that would be considered over the weekend.
El Paso Corp., which is preparing for a takeover by Kinder Morgan Inc. (KMI) and a blockbuster deal to sell its exploration unit, said fourth quarter profits more than doubled. The natural gas pipeline franchise also reported a solid performance, lifted by rising volumes from the Marcellus Shale. A consortium of private equity investors led by Apollo Global Management LLC late last month agreed to buy the exploration business, EP Energy, for about $7.15 billion (see NGI, Feb. 27). The KMI deal and the sale both are expected to close by the end of June (see related story). Beyond the big deals, El Paso’s net profits reached $185 million (24 cents/share) in 4Q2011, compared with $62 million (9 cents) in the year-ago period. After adjusting for the impacts of financial derivatives and other one-time charges, the company earned 28 cents in 4Q2011, versus 20 cents in 4Q2010. Net income in 2011, which was impacted by derivatives losses, fell to $141 million (18 cents/share), versus $721 million ($1.00) for 2010. Throughput for the Pipeline Group, including equity investments, rose 8% in 4Q2011 from a year earlier, primarily because of higher Marcellus Shale volumes on Tennessee Gas Pipeline. The Pipeline Group earned $417 million in 4Q2011, compared with $439 million in 4Q2010. E&P production volumes rose 11% from a year earlier to 880 MMcfe/d; the year-end production exit rate exceeded 900 MMcfe/d.