Norway’s Statoil said Monday it had sold onshore assets in the U.S. Marcellus shale formation to Antero Resources Corp. for $96 million in cash, to free up capital for other uses, its third divestment in the Marcellus in two years.
The 67% state-owned Norwegian oil and gas producer said the assets were operated by Southwestern Energy Co., which sold its share in the same assets to Antero two months ago.
The divested area of 11,500 acres is mainly located in the Wetzel, Tyler and Doddridge counties, and Statoil’s average working interest is 19%, Statoil said.
Since December 2014, Statoil has divested nearly $900 million worth of Marcellus assets, including a $394 million sale of a stake in the southwestern Marcellus to Southwestern Energy Co. and a $407 million sale of operated properties in West Virginia to EQT Corp.
Statoil said the transaction would increase its financial flexibility and free up cash for core activities. The company retains its operated assets in the Marcellus, it said.
Statoil entered Marcellus and the U.S. shale industry through a 2008 joint venture with Chesapeake Energy Corp. and in 2012 became an operator in the area through the acquisition of additional acreage in a liquids-rich part of the formation.
By Kjetil Malkenes Hovland
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