Banpu/Kalnin Buys 5,289 Ac & 35 Wells in NEPA Marcellus for $105M

Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, in cooperation with their American-based partner Kalnin Ventures, has just snapped up their sixth piece of the Marcellus Shale–once again in northeast Pennsylvania. Kalnin announced this morning they have cut a deal, using $105 million of Banpu’s money, to buy an unspecified amount of Marcellus acreage and 35 producing shale wells in Wyoming County, PA from Warren Resources. Based on a previous Kalnin story, yesterday’s announcement, and the Warren Resources website, MDN believes the total acreage involved is 5,289 net acres (6,982 gross). Which doesn’t seem like much. But you have to view the purchase in context. That $105 million paid is mostly for the producing 35 wells (roughly $3M per well). Plus, the acreage is no doubt adjacent to previous acreage and wells Kalnin/Banpu bought in Wyoming County back in May (see Thai Company Banpu Invests in Another 34 Marcellus Wells in NEPA). It was just last week we spotted and highlighted a story that quotes Banpu’s CEO Somruedee Chaimongkol as saying her company is considering “putting more money on top of the $500 million” already committed for shale gas purchases in the Marcellus (see Thailand’s Banpu Looking to Invest More Money in NEPA Marcellus). The “considering” period didn’t last long! This sixth investment now puts Banpu’s investment stake in the NEPA Marcellus at $522 million, with no end in sight…
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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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Thailand’s Banpu Investing Another $293M in Northeast PA Shale

Banpu CEO Somrudee Chaimongkol (credit: Nikkei Asian Review)

From May 2016 to May 2017, Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, has invested in no less than four deals to grab ownership of Marcellus Shale wells and leases in northeast Pennsylvania (see Thai Company Banpu Invests in Another 34 Marcellus Wells in NEPA). So far Banpu’s total investment has been $207 million. The wells they own generate 46 thousand cubic feet (Mcf) of natural gas per day. It seems that Banpu can’t get enough of the Marcellus in northeast PA. In an article running in the Bangkok Post yesterday, Banpu CEO Somrudee Chaimongkol said her company will set aside $293 million to invest in more Marcellus wells from now until 2020, hoping to goose production to 78 Mcf/d (an increase of 70%)…
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Thai Company Banpu Invests in Another 34 Marcellus Wells in NEPA

One year ago, Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, invested $112 million to purchase Range Resources’ Marcellus non-operated JV operations in Bradford County, PA (see Thai Company Buys Out Range Resources’ JV in NEPA for $112M). The “Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement” gave Banpu an ownership share in 62 producing wells and another 14 wells waiting on completion, and a share in 170+ more drilling locations. Talisman is the operator of the wells and the company that does the drilling (Banpu is just an investor). Banpu liked it so much, they did it again in January of this year (see Thai Company Banpu Makes 2nd Investment in Northeast Marcellus). The January deal gave Banpu a 10.24% stake in 10,000 acres of Marcellus leases, once again in northeastern PA, for $63 million. Chief Oil & Gas is the driller on the acreage in the second deal. Then in March, Banpu signed an agreement to invest $16 million into a venture with Tug Hill Marcellus (see Thai Company Banpu Invests Another $16M in PA Marcellus Wells). It seems that Banpu can’t get enough of the Marcellus in northeastern PA. The company just announced a fourth deal to invest in more NEPA acreage and wells. How many wells? What county is the new deal located in? And which driller is the operator of that acreage? We give you the details you won’t find elsewhere…
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Thai Company Banpu Invests Another $16M in PA Marcellus Wells

Last May, Range Resources sold its portion of a joint venture in northeast Pennsylvania (see Thai Company Buys Out Range Resources’ JV in NEPA for $112M). Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, invested $112 million to purchase Range’s Marcellus non-operated JV operations in Bradford County, PA. The “Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement” gave Banpu an ownership share in 62 producing wells and another 14 wells waiting on completion, and a share in 170+ more drilling locations. Talisman is the operator of the wells and the company that does the drilling (Banpu is just an investor). Banpu liked it so much, they did it again in January of this year (see Thai Company Banpu Makes 2nd Investment in Northeast Marcellus). The January deal gave Banpu a 10.24% stake in 10,000 acres of Marcellus leases, once again in northeastern PA, for $63 million. Chief Oil & Gas is the driller on the acreage in the second deal. We have a three-peat. Banpu, via its American agent Kalnin Ventures, has just signed an agreement to invest $16 million into a venture with Tug Hill Marcellus. The new deal does not identify the exact counties, but does say the acreage is located in northeastern PA. Once the deal closes, when you add all three deals together, Banpu says it will own partial interests in 215 operating wells producing 40 million cubic feet of gas per day. And Banpu says it’s not over yet. They plan to invest more in the Marcellus in 2017…
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Thai Company Banpu Makes 2nd Investment in Northeast Marcellus

1/18/17 Update: The seller has now been identified as Chief Oil & Gas. See the appended press release below from Banpu’s U.S. partner Kalnin Ventures.

Last May, Range Resources sold its portion of a joint venture in northeast Pennsylvania (see Thai Company Buys Out Range Resources’ JV in NEPA for $112M). Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, invested $112 million to purchase Range’s Marcellus non-operated JV operations in Bradford County, PA. The “Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement” gave Banpu an ownership share in 62 producing wells and another 14 wells waiting on completion, and a share in 170+ more drilling locations. Talisman is the operator of the wells and the company that does the drilling in the JV. Banpu liked it so much, they’re back. The company announced today it has acquired a 10.24% stake in more Marcellus leases in northeastern PA for $63 million. The information we’re able to locate does not specify who the driller is in which Banpu is sinking money, but the acreage is located near the first deal–presumably also in Bradford County…
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Carrizo O&G Now Gone from Marcellus/Utica, Totally Focused on Texas

Carrizo Oil & Gas no longer owns any assets in either the Marcellus or Utica Shale. Carrizo, a Houston-based driller, actively drills in the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas, the Delaware Basin in West Texas, the D-J Basin in Colorado (more on that in a moment), and until mid-year in 2015, they had an active drilling program in the Ohio Utica and Pennsylvania Marcellus. We told you back in May that Carrizo was shopping its Marcellus/Utica assets (see Carrizo O&G Puts Up ‘For Sale’ Sign on Marcellus/Utica Assets). In September Carrizo announced a deal to sell their Utica acreage for $62 million (see Carrizo Sells 26K Prime Utica Acres for $62M), and in October they announced a deal to sell their Marcellus acreage for $84 million–their portion of a joint venture with India’s Reliance Industries Limited (see India’s RIL, Carrizo Sell NEPA Marcellus Assets for $210M). Yesterday Carrizo announced both deals have closed. Carrizo, along with Elvis, has left the building. They also announced a new deal to sell off all of their assets in the Colorado D-J Basin. Carrizo will totally focus on oil drilling in the Eagle Ford Shale (South Texas) and the Permian Basin (West Texas)…
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A Closer Look at Kalnin Ventures and Their Marcellus Investments

It’s time to look deeper into Kalnin Ventures, a Denver, CO-based investment firm that invests in U.S. upstream (mostly shale) deals. Sound familiar? Kalnin has been the “front man” for Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer. Over the past year and a half Kalnin/Banpu have snapped up some 55,000 acres and 355 shale wells–in the northeast Pennsylvania Marcellus (see our Kalnin/Banpu stories here). At least, we thought Kalnin was the “front man” for Banpu. It’s certainly Banpu 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. Kalnin is its own company. Yes, Banpu is the major benefactor providing the funds, but Kalnin is clearly in the driver’s seat with these Marcellus deals. Kalnin is not an operator. While news coverage may say Kalnin is “a top-20 gas producer,” as the Bloomberg article below says, that does not mean Kalnin is an operator. They’re investors. They’re owners. Other people do the actual drilling and management of the wells. In checking out the Kalnin website we found this description of the company: “Kalnin Ventures currently is backed by investors with equity fund commitments of USD 500 million, within its oil and gas fund BKV Oil and Gas Capital Partners, L.P. The company seeks to invest in attractive upstream oil and gas opportunities in North America (United States of America and Canada) with the goal of creating long-term sustainable value in the energy industry.” And right under that statement, this interesting statement: “Kalnin Ventures supports and upholds biblical principles as the foundations for the company’s values and underpins our company’s promise of integrity and transparency to our investors and partners.” Hats off to Kalnin for being upfront and unashamed of their God-honoring, faith-based principles. Not many companies have the guts to be so bold these days. Here’s an inside look at Kalnin Ventures, and how they continue to make money on Marcellus shale deals–even in a low-gas-price world…
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Marcellus & Utica Shale Story Links: Mon, Oct 16, 2017

The “best of the rest” – stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading. In today’s lineup: PA House committee cancels meeting on severance tax bill; the many benefits of fracking IN the Delaware River Basin; thoughts on Carrizo’s Marcellus asset sale; Ohio the “key anchor” to Appalchia’s bright plastics future; convering WV buses to run natgas; Cheniere starts up 4th LNG export facility; OPEC’s message to shale drillers; drilling mud separator expands into US shale; Clean Power Plan’s counterfeit benefits; and more!
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India’s RIL, Carrizo Sell NEPA Marcellus Assets for $210M

Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is the single largest company in India, and one of the largest energy companies in the world. RIL invested $3.5 billion in a Marcellus joint venture with Atlas Energy in 2010, and later battled Chevron to buy Atlas–but Chevron won, so RIL became a jv partner with Chevron. RIL currently has 3 U.S. shale joint ventures: the Chevron jv in the Marcellus (owns 40% of that acreage), a jv with Carrizo Oil & Gas in the northeast PA Marcellus (owns 60% of that acreage), and a jv with Pioneer Natural Resources in the Texas Eagle Ford (owns 45% of that acreage). Back in 2015, RIL signaled they are looking to dump all of their U.S. shale assets (see Indian Giant RIL Looking to Dump its Marcellus Joint Ventures). It took a few years, but earlier today Banpu, Thailand’s largest coal producer, announced that is has purchased all of the RIL/Carrizo jv (from both RIL and Carrizo) in northeastern PA–for $210 million. Does Banpu sound familiar? It should. This is the fifth investment Banpu, via its American subsidiary Kalnin Ventures, has made in the northeast Marcellus…
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Texas Jury Says Talisman Cheated JV Partner Out of $100M

We came across an interesting press release from a law firm that won an extraordinary settlement for its client against Talisman Energy–a $100 million award. What’s interesting is that the plaintiff that sued Talisman is one of Talisman’s joint venture partners–not landowners. Matrix Petroleum invested in a deal with Talisman as a “non-operating” partner. That is, Matrix put up money, but Talisman did all the drilling and selling of the oil and gas they extracted. Matrix says over a period of five years that Talisman intentionally cooked the books–failing to accurately report how much oil was produced, thereby shorting Matrix on their share of the profits. The jury agreed and awarded Matrix the money they should have gotten if Talisman had not cooked the books. Ouch. All of this happened in Texas–the drilling and the trial. So what does it have to do with the Marcellus/Utica? Perhaps nothing. But we do recall reporting that last year Talisman took on a non-operating joint venture partner in the Marcellus from Thailand–Banpu (see Talisman Gets a New Thai JV Partner for Marcellus Drilling in NEPA). Perhaps the bean counters at Banpu will want to give closer scrutiny to the books in their jv with Talisman?…
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Thai Company Buys Out Range Resources’ JV in NEPA for $112M

Banpu5/25/16 NOTE: Our thanks to a sharp MDN reader (Chris H.) for pointing out we had this story slightly wrong. Banpu is not entering a JV with Range, they are, instead, buying Range’s portion of an existing JV. That is, Range is exiting the JV by selling its share to Banpu. Range was not the operator in the JV acreage–they only owned a piece of the action. Talisman is the operator of the wells and the company that does the drilling.

Range Resources, the company that just committed to buying another driller based in Louisiana for $4.4 billion (see Range Resources Buys Louisiana Driller in Deal Worth $4.4B), has just gotten itself a joint venture partner/investor in its own Marcellus operations just sold its portion of a joint venture in northeast Pennsylvania. Banpu Pcl, Thailand’s largest coal producer, yesterday invested $112 million in some of to purchase Range’s Marcellus non-operated JV operations in Bradford County, PA. The “Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement” will give Banpu an ownership share in 62 producing wells and another 14 wells waiting on completion, and a share in 170+ more drilling locations. The wells currently produce an average 21 million cubic feet per day (Mmcf/d) of natgas…
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Talisman Gets a New Thai JV Partner for Marcellus Drilling in NEPA

BanpuThailand’s largest coal miner, Banpu Pcl, has spent $112 million to buy a 29.4% stake in the Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement (JEA). JEA is a Marcellus shale drilling joint venture 65.4%-owned and operated by Talisman Energy. What it means is that Talisman has a new partner in their northeast PA Marcellus drilling program. Banpu has hired the former CEO of PTT Exploration and Production Pcl, Thailand’s largest oil and gas explorer, as a director and to advise Banpu on JEA and on the company’s new and developing upstream gas strategy. PTT Exploration and Production is a subsidiary of Thailand’s state-owned PTT Public Company Limited. PTT Global Chemical is another subsidiary of PTT Public Company Limited–and the company proposing to build a $5B+ ethane cracker complex in Belmont County, OH (see It’s Official: Belmont County Chosen as POSSIBLE Cracker Plant Site). Conclusion: The government (and companies) of Thailand are investing in American shale energy in a major way. Here’s the news about Banpu becoming a new partner with Talisman in the Marcellus…
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