Europe Invests Heavily in American Natural Gas Drilling in the Marcellus, Details of Chesapeake/StatoilHydro Deal

The Fort Worth Business Press reports European companies are making major investments in American shale plays, including the Marcellus. The article reports the following details about Chesapeake Energy’s new partner Norwegian-based StatoilHydro:

Norwegian state-controlled energy company StatoilHydro would pay $3.375 billion for a 32.5-percent stake in [Chesapeake’s] 1.8 million net acres of Marcellus Shale assets, according to a November 2008 agreement. StatoilHydro paid $1.25 billion in cash at closing, and the remaining $2.125 billion over the next three years “by funding 75 percent of Chesapeake’s 67.5 percent share of drilling and completion expenditures until the $2.125 billion obligation has been funded,” according to the Nov. 11 statement.

“This deal adds a major building block to the gas value chain position we have established in the U.S., the world’s largest and most liquid gas market,” said StatoilHydro President and CEO Helge Lund in a statement. “This is a significant step in strengthening our U.S. gas position, building on our existing capacity rights for the Cove Point LNG terminal, our gas trading and marketing organization and the gas producing assets in the Gulf of Mexico.”

Read the full article: Europeans see benefits in U.S. shale