Norwegian driller Norse Energy’s U.S. subsidiary, with significant acreage in upstate New York, continues to sell off bits and pieces of its New York operation. Norse’s strategy has been to stay alive long enough for New York to adopt new drilling regulations and lift the de facto moratorium on Marcellus and Utica Shale drilling in the state. Norse’s latest sale is to a former Norse CEO.
From the Norse press release:
Norse Energy Corp. ASA announces that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its operated production, ~22,000 held by production (“HBP”) acres (in which Norse retains a 37.5% working interest in the deep Utica formation), gathering system, and pipeline rights of way in Central New York. The buyer will also receive a three year warrant to purchase 81 million shares at a strike price of NOK 0.40 at the closing date. Total cash consideration to Norse is USD 37 million.
The buyer is EmKey Resources, LLC, a privately owned company, led and partially owned by Øivind Risberg, a current Norse board member and former Norse Energy CEO.
An Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders in Norse will be scheduled for early April to seek approval for the transaction, which is expected to close on or about April 16, 2012.
In connection with this transaction, the buyer is committed to construct a pipeline capable of transporting a minimum of 90,000 Mcf/day, once Norse so nominates for firm transportation.
“This asset sale is an important milestone for Norse Energy. The cash consideration received will fund the bond debt restructuring that we announced on February 28,” commented Norse CEO Mark Dice. “With this transaction, Norse gains a strategic partner who is committed to invest in pipeline infrastructure in Central New York. Norse is now much better positioned to accelerate development of its significant shale resources,” concluded Dice. Following this sale, the Company will own or lease approximately 131,000 net acres in New York State of which ~33,000 lies in the liquids rich shale fairways of Western New York, and the remaining ~98,000 net acres lies in the Marcellus and Utica natural gas fairways in Central New York.*
*Norse Energy (Mar 15, 2012) – Norse Energy Corp ASA: Norse Announces USD 37 Million Sale of Assets