Pioneer Sells Deepwater Gulf of Mexico Assets
Pioneer Natural Resources wholly-owned subsidiary, Pioneer Natural Resources USA, Inc., has entered into a purchase and sale agreement through which Marubeni Offshore Production (USA) Inc., a subsidiary of Marubeni Corporation, will acquire certain deepwater Gulf of Mexico assets from Pioneer for cash proceeds of $1.3 billion. The transaction has an effective date of January 1, 2006 and is expected to close in March or April. The agreement is subject to customary post-closing adjustments, the exercise of preferential rights related to some of the properties and federal antitrust clearance.
The transaction includes Pioneer's interest in three producing projects (the Falcon Corridor, Devils Tower and Canyon Express), two potential development projects (Ozona Deep and Thunder Hawk) and 88 exploration blocks.
Pioneer is retaining its 55% operated interest in Green Canyon Blocks 299 and 300 where it drilled the Clipper discovery announced in October 2005. Pioneer has a rig contracted to drill appraisal wells on the discovery in the second quarter and is currently evaluating possible development scenarios.
Pioneer plans to use a portion of the proceeds to initiate the repurchase of the remaining $350 million of shares authorized under its previously announced $1 billion share repurchase program. Proceeds will also be used to fund a portion of its 2006 capital budget and reduce short-term debt. During December 2005, the Company's net daily production from the properties being divested averaged approximately 38,000 barrels oil equivalent.
Scott D. Sheffield, Pioneer's Chairman and CEO, stated, "We are pleased to have completed this transaction with Marubeni while retaining the opportunity to utilize our commercialization expertise to develop Clipper. With the completion of our divestitures and our commitment to complete the $1 billion share repurchase program, we are successfully delivering on the strategic initiatives we announced last September. Approximately 92% of our production and 98% of our proved reserves will now be located in onshore oil and gas basins in North America. These core assets, coupled with several emerging resource plays, provide a strong platform for the company to begin delivering consistent, profitable growth over the next five years."
Pioneer is a large independent oil and gas exploration and
production company, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, with operations in
the United States, Canada and Africa.
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Company: Marubeni Corp more info
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