BP buying BHP Billiton’s US shale oil & gas assets for $10.5bn.

BP is buying ‘world-class’ unconventional oil and gas assets from BHP in a move that upgrades and repositions its American onshore business.

 

The portfolio includes assets in the highly-prized Permian-Delaware basin in Texas, along with two premium positions in the Eagle Ford and Haynesville basins in Texas and Louisiana (see map, below).

The assets currently produce 190,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boed) per day, of which about 45% are liquid hydrocarbons.

Key to unlocking their full potential is BP’s innovative Lower 48 team, which has developed dynamic ways of working that have made it one of the leading operators in the industry.

 

‘Some of the best acreage in the best basins in the onshore US’

BP’s Upstream chief executive Bernard Looney said: “We’ve just got access to some of the best acreage in some of the best basins in the onshore US, and I think we have one of the best teams in the industry to work it.”

The $10.5 billion acquisition is the biggest since buying Arco in 1999 and will be fully accommodated within BP’s current financial framework.

Major step forward

BP chief financial officer Brian Gilvary said: “The financial repositioning we have delivered in recent years and the confidence we have in our outlook for free cashflow allow us to take this extremely attractive opportunity now without any adjustment to our financial frame. This is fully consistent with our commitment to financial discipline and creating value for shareholders.”

He added: “With our planned additional divestments and buybacks, we expect to deliver this major step forward for a net investment of around $5 billion.”

Delivering synergies

The combined business will be led by David Lawler, CEO of BP’s Lower 48 business. BP estimates post-integration it will deliver more than $350 million of annual pre-tax synergies, through sustainable cost reductions and commercial and trading opportunities unique to BP.

Growing distributions

BP also announced that it has raised the dividend for the first time in 15 quarters, a 2.5% increase to 10.25 cents per ordinary share.

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