Aubrey McClendon Forms Utica Company, Gets Major Investor

Aubrey McClendonAs MDN has said before and will no doubt say again, we believe Chesapeake Energy will rue the day they fired its founder, Aubrey McClendon. Just a few short months after being tossed out the door by board member and corporate raider Carl Icahn, McClendon founded a new company and was already active in Ohio’s Utica Shale (see He’s Baaaack! Aubrey McClendon is Back in OH Shale Country). His new company, with offices about a mile from Chesapeake’s HQ in Oklahoma City, is called American Energy Partners.

Word has leaked once again from “inside sources” that McClendon has now founded a second company, this one specifically set up to target the Utica Shale. The new company is called American Energy Utica and is being backed with big money by a prominent player in the energy space…
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NiSource & M3 Do a Deal to Process/Sell NGLs in Eastern Ohio

An important announcement yesterday for drillers (and landowners) in the northern portion of the Ohio Utica Shale play: Pennant Midstream announced they are building a 38-mile natural gas liquids (NGL) pipeline from the Pennant-owned Hickory Bend cryogenic processing plant (in Mahoning County, OH) to the Utica East Ohio Midstream-owned Kensington cryogenic processing plant (in Columbiana County, OH). Pennant says initially they will ship 90,000 barrels per day through the new pipeline.

Why is Pennant with its own processing plant sending NGLs to another (competitor’s) processing plant? Good question…
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Williams Asks FERC to Approve $610M Transco SE Pipeline Expansion

Previously MDN told you that Williams was holding an “open season” to gauge interest in expanding capacity on their Transco pipeline system to carry cheap Marcellus and Utica Shale natural gas from the northeast to the southeast (see Open Season to Expand Transco Pipeline in PA Marcellus). Drillers didn’t waste any time and the project is now “fully subscribed”–meaning all of the new increased capacity is now spoken for. So yesterday, Williams made a formal application to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to expand the Transco–a project they call the Leidy Southeast expansion project.

Williams plans to spend $610 million, which includes laying 30 miles of new pipeline and upgrading compressor plants along the way…
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EVEP CEO Mark Houser Discusses Utica Shale Strategy, Future

Mark Houser, president and CEO of EV Energy Partners, presented at the IPAA Oil and Gas Investment Symposium yesterday in San Francisco. Below are portions of his talk dealing with EVEP’s Utica Shale assets and strategy. Also below is the PowerPoint presentation he used, which contains some great maps and charts dealing with the Utica. In particular take a look at slides #8 through #18. Don’t miss the close-up pictures of UEO’s Kensington and Harrison plants.

If we could “net net” summarize what Houser said about the Utica and the role it will play in the company’s future, it’s in line with our previous observations, which is…
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Magnum Hunter CEO Gary Evans Charts a Marcellus/Utica Future

Gary Evans, CEO of Magnum Hunter, presented at the IPAA Oil and Gas Investment Symposium yesterday in San Francisco. He did a deep dive into MH’s Marcellus and Utica Shale operations and plans moving forward. Evans said the company now owns 490,000 net acres in the northeast (Appalachia) with 81,000 net acres in the Marcellus Shale and 80,000 net acres in the Utica Shale. They have investments and operations in both drilling and in the midstream (pipelines) segment via subsidiary Eureka Hunter.

Below are Evans’ comments from yesterday along with a PowerPoint presentation which we believe is likely the one he used (or very similar to the one he used). Slides #13-#27 cover the Marcellus and Utica–well worth your time to review, some great maps and charts. Also included, a nifty picture of MH’s new robotic drilling rig (slide #26)…
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Gastar CEO Porter Outlines Brighter Future in WV Marcellus/Utica

J. Russell Porter, president and CEO of Gastar Exploration, presented at the Johnson Rice 2013 Energy Conference yesterday in New Orleans. Last year at this time Gastar was facing a major lawsuit and a dark future. Porter points out in his opening remarks that the $120 million lawsuit against them was settled this past year–for $1 million–and the future today is much brighter. Gastar concentrates in two shale plays: the Hunton Limestone Oil play (in Oklahoma and Texas), and the Marcellus (in West Virginia). The company has concentrated their efforts on the Marcellus for the past couple of years.

Below are Porter’s comments concerning the Marcellus/Utica, giving us insight into where Gastar is now, and where they hope to go, along with the PowerPoint presentation he used during his talk. Slides #10-#16 are related to the Marcellus/Utica. What caught our eye: During the second half of next year (2H14) Gastar plans to drill its first Utica well–in WV, not Ohio…
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