SM Energy trades higher after expanding Midland Basin footprint
Earlier today, SM Energy announced that it has entered into a definitive purchase agreement to acquire 35,700 net acres in Howard and Martin Counties in West Texas, expanding the Company's Midland Basin footprint to approximately 82,450 net acres. The acquired acreage complements, and is partially contiguous to, the Company's recently closed Howard County acreage acquisition and includes approximately 2,400 Boe per day net production. The purchase price is $1.1B cash, subject to customary purchase price adjustments, plus 13.4M shares of SM common stock to be issued to the seller. The seller is QStar LLC, a portfolio company of EnCap Investments L.P. and a related entity. The Company also announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of its Williston Basin assets located outside of Divide County for $785M, subject to customary purchase price adjustments. The purchaser is Oasis Petroleum Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Jay Ottoson comments: "Our strategy is straight-forward, we intend to deliver growth in cash flow per debt-adjusted share by being a premier operator of top tier assets. We have established a position as an outstanding operator in the Midland Basin, and with this acquisition we also establish significant scale. We are particularly excited about the performance and future potential of Howard County, leading us to further core up our portfolio and focus on this fast emerging, top tier area. "As with our initial Howard County acquisition, we expect to immediately employ our operational expertise to the area. Our preliminary plans for Midland Basin activity include adding a fourth rig during the fourth quarter of 2016 and increasing to six rigs in early 2017, thereby increasing our expected aggregate 2016 capital program before acquisitions to approximately $710 million. We continue to work to concentrate capital on the highest return programs and generate higher company-wide margins, which drive cash flow growth and value creation for our shareholders." Shares of SM Energy are up 1.81% to $39.43 in morning trading.