McClendon’s American Energy-Utica Signs OH Water Deal with MWCD

The Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) continues its pro-drilling ways. MWCD was organized in 1933 to reduce the effects of flooding and conserve water for beneficial public uses, oversees 16 dams and reservoirs across 22 counties in Ohio, covering 20% of the state. A huge part of Ohio is under the oversight and control of the MWCD. We’ve previously covered their deals with Antero Resources to lease District property for drilling. We’ve also covered District deals to sell water to Antero and other shale drillers. Last week they signed a new deal, much smaller than others they’ve signed, to sell water to Aubrey McClendon’s American Energy-Utica subsidiary. American Energy will pay $6 per 1,000 gallons (a little over half a penny per gallon). The deal is only for three months–from May through July…
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Hess Sells 74,000 OH Utica Shale Dry Gas Acres to Mystery Buyer

Looks like the end of 2014 came in January of 2014 for Hess. On Oct 30, 2013 Hess’ Executive VP and President of Worldwide Exploration & Production, Greg Hill, said that Hess was working on figuring out their Utica Shale acreage and where the wet gas area is located so they could make decisions about where they will and won’t drill. Hill said they would make their final decision “at the end of 2014 once we finish delineation” (see Hess Officials Talk About the Utica on 3Q13 Earnings Call). Yesterday Hess announced they have struck a deal to sell to sell 74,000 Utica Shale dry gas acres to an unnamed buyer for $924 million. End of 2014 (and Christmas) came early for Hess. Why sell now? And, who was the buyer? MDN thinks we know (we speculate below).

Hess owns a 100% interest in 95,000 Utica Shale acres, and a 50% interest (in a joint venture deal with CONSOL Energy) for another 65,000 Utica acres. In consulting the Hess map of their Utica acreage below (from a November 2013 investor presentation), you can get a pretty good idea of where the acreage they’ve sold is probably located. Much of Hess’ 100%-owned acreage is in the “dry gas” area on the map–our money is that most of that acreage is what got sold. No doubt landowners will soon receive notifications if they are among those being traded to another drilling team. Below is the Hess announcement (which is brief), the map we located which helps shed light on the brief announcement, and our speculation on why they sold now, and who purchased…
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McClendon’s New Company Gets Another Half Billion $ for Utica

Former Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon’s new company, American Energy Partners, keeps the money rollin’ in. Last fall AEP lined up a big pile of cash to be used to purchase leases in the Utica Shale (see McClendon Gets a Little Help ($1.7B) from His Friends in OH Utica). In December, Aubrey floated 100 million “units” (i.e. stock) in an effort to raise up to $2 billion more (see McClendon Plan to Raise Additional $2B in “Unit” Offering). No word on how that effort is going.

In the meantime, time’s a wastin’, so Aubrey has raised another $500 million in private equity to help fund Utica Shale ventures (see the story below). MDN wonders, is it just coincidence that AEP’s brief announcement was issued yesterday, on the same day that Hess announced their sale of 74,000 Utica Shale acres to a mystery buyer? Interesting, no?…
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Exclusive: McClendon Buys 24K Acres of SWEPI Leases in OH Utica

exclusiveIt seems that Aubrey McClendon is already putting some of that $1.7 billion he recently raised to good use (see McClendon Gets a Little Help ($1.7B) from His Friends in OH Utica). Thanks to an alert commenter on the website, we now know where some of that $1.7B went.

In paperwork filed with the Guernsey County, OH Recorder’s office dated October 10, 2013, SWEPI (i.e. Shell) assigned what appears to be most or all of their leased Utica Shale acreage in Guernsey County over to McClendon’s America Energy – Utica company. The transfer (full copy embedded below listing ALL of the leases and landowners by name), includes 24,650 gross/24,016 net acres…
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Clue? Aubrey McClendon Picks up Clendening Reservoir Leases

It ain’t much land, but it is notable nonetheless for the clue it provides. The Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) has approved the re-assignment of mineral rights for 133 acres at the Clendening Reservoir in Harrison County, OH to American Energy Utica, Aubrey McClendon’s new company.

It gives us a continuing look at just where in the Utica Aubrey is concentrating his $1.7 billion worth of efforts…
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McClendon Gets a Little Help ($1.7B) from His Friends in OH Utica

I get by with a little help from my friendsAfter the mass(acre) firings at Chesapeake Energy earlier this week (see The Great Chesapeake Massacre: Lawler Fires 800 People in One Day), we expect there may be a line out of the door at the Oklahoma City-based American Energy Partners (AEP), a company founded by former Chesapeake CEO, Aubrey McClendon–who was fired from Chesapeake earlier this year. Fired Chesapeake employees may have good reason to head on over to AEP HQ.

Yesterday McClendon announced AEP has raised $1.7 billion and plans to use that money this year to (a) snap up 110,000+ acres in the OH Utica, and (b) begin drilling on that acreage. He even has deals set up with midstream companies for gathering and processing. The details from McClendon and AEP (cue music to “With a Little Help from my Friends” by the Beatles):
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McClendon’s Utica Company Does JV with OH Driller, Drilling Soon

Yesterday MDN brought you the news that former Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon had started a second company specifically created to target the Utica Shale (see Aubrey McClendon Forms Utica Company, Gets Major Investor). In true Aubrey “wheeling and dealing” fashion, his new company, called American Energy Utica, is already forming joint ventures with other companies in the Utica Shale. One of those companies is Red Hill Development, an independent oil & gas driller located in Dover (Tuscawaras County), OH.

Red Hill Development is tickled pink to be working with McClendon and says the partnership will be an ongoing venture “for many years to come.” According to Red Hill, the new joint venture is already applying for permits and will begin drilling by the end of this year. The focus of their drilling efforts? Guernsey and Harrison counties…
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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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