Thailand’s Banpu Looking to Invest More Money in NEPA Marcellus

Over the past year and a half Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, in cooperation with American-based partner Kalnin Ventures, has snapped up some 55,000 acres and 355 shale wells–in the northeast Pennsylvania Marcellus (see our Banpu stories here). At first we thought Kalnin was simply the “front man” for Banpu. It’s Banpu’s money buying the leases and the wells, so we figured Kalnin was just an American subsidiary on paper for Banpu. But it turns out the truth is more nuanced (see A Closer Look at Kalnin Ventures and Their Marcellus Investments). Kalnin is its own company. Yes, Banpu is the funder, but Kalnin is in the driver’s seat with these Marcellus deals. Regardless of who’s on top, the Banpu/Kalnin team have become important players in the Pennsylvania Marcellus–in the northeast part of the play. Banpu originally promised to invest up to $500 million in Marcellus assets and has spent $417 million on Marcellus assets thus far. Apparently they like those investments. Yesterday Banpu CEO Somruedee Chaimongkol said the company is considering “putting more money on top of the $500 million” in shale gas. Specifically, she said the company will invest in the northeast PA Marcellus because, “It is the sweetest spot for shale gas.” She also said she likes President Trump’s energy policies that are “favourable to coal and natural gas”…

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