El Paso Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its exploration and production business, EP Energy Corporation (EP Energy), for approximately $7.15 billion to affiliates of Apollo Global Management, LLC and Riverstone Holdings, LLC, who are joined by Access Industries, Inc. and other parties. El Paso's entering into a definitive agreement for the sale of its exploration and production business was contemplated in Kinder Morgan, Inc.'s previously announced agreement to acquire El Paso Corporation. The sale of EP Energy is dependent upon completion of the Kinder Morgan-El Paso transaction, which is expected to close in the second quarter of 2012, subject to customary regulatory approvals. The sale of EP Energy is also expected to close about the same time as that transaction.
As announced in October of 2011, El Paso's net operating loss carryforwards will largely offset taxes associated with the sale of the exploration and production assets, and thus almost the entirety of the proceeds from this sale will be used to substantially reduce the debt borrowed by KMI to fund the cash portion of its purchase of El Paso.
"We are pleased that this pending sale will allow the El Paso exploration and production assets to be kept intact as a single entity," said Kinder Morgan Chairman and CEO Richard D. Kinder. "We thank the EP Energy employees for their efforts to build a strong company and in facilitating the sales process."
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