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Statoil Acquires Brigham – Gains Bakken Acreage

by Kenneth E. DuBose on October 17, 2011

Statoil is acquiring Austin based Brigham Exploration in an all cash transaction worth $4.4 billion. The deal builds on Statoil’s current positions in the Marcellus and Eagle Ford shales, as well as giving the company its first operated position in the onshore U.S.

The company paid a 36% premium to BEXP’s previous 30 day average trading price. Statoil gains >20,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day of production in the Bakken and more than 375,000 acres across the Wiliston Basin.

This deal is the latest in a string of mergers and acquisitions in 2011 that have involved many international companies from around the globe investing in U.S. shale deposits.

The total equity value is approximately USD 4.4 billion, reflecting an enterprise value of approximately USD 4.7 billion, based on June 30, 2011 net debt.

The transaction will provide Statoil with more than 375,000 net acres in the Williston Basin, which holds potential for oil production from the Bakken and Three Forks formations. Brigham also holds interests in 40,000 net acres in other areas. At this early stage of development the risked resource base is estimated at 300-500 million barrels of oil equivalent (boe), equity. Current equity production is approximately 21,000 boe per day, and the acreage has potential to ramp up to 60,000-100,000 boe per day equity production over a five year period.

The Bakken and Three Forks formations are among the largest oil accumulations in the United States. Various sources have estimated the technically recoverable reserves to be in the range of 5 – 24 billion boe, over a 38,000 square kilometers area. The attractiveness of the Bakken and Three Forks plays has resulted in Statoil offering a 36% premium over the average trading price of Brigham stock for the last 30 days.

Read the full press release at statoil.com

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