Hilcorp Forms $1.24B JV with Carlyle to Shop for Shale Deals

Smart. Everyone knows the best time to buy something, whether it’s stocks, real estate, fuel oil, whatever–is when the market is crashing and burning. Always buy in a “down” market and sell in an “up” market. Natural gas and oil selling at current historic lows qualifies as a down market. It’s about as down as it gets! So it figures those companies who have kept their debt levels low and managed themselves well are now in the catbird seat and can go shopping for bargain basement deals–while their competitors sit on the sidelines hoping to stay out of bankruptcy court. Marcellus/Utica driller Hilcorp is one of those well managed/smart companies. Hilcorp has just joined forces with energy investment firm Carlyle in a partnership to go shopping for deals…
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Philly Refinery Processes 190K Barrels/Day of Shale Oil

My how times change. A year ago the then-Sunoco Philadelphia refinery was set to close its doors with a loss of 850 jobs. But something happened on the way to closing down: shale. Shale oil, in particular. Today, the refinery is called Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES), a joint venture between the  Carlyle Group and Sunoco (Sunoco merged with and is now known as Energy Transfer Partners). As MDN chronicled in July 2012, three shale plays will ultimately play an important role for the refinery–the Bakken, the Marcellus and the Utica (see Sunoco & Carlyle Group Ink Joint Venture for Philly Refinery). However, PES is also eyeing other shale plays, like oil from the Permian Basin (in Texas). That would be a hoot–Pennsylvania refining Texas oil!

More than half of the refinery’s 350,000 barrel per day capacity now comes from the Bakken Shale in North Dakota. How? Mostly by railroad, with the rest by barge. According to PA Gov. Tom Corbett, on hand for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the refinery earlier this week, the Marcellus and Utica will soon play a role at the refinery too: “There’s a pipeline coming over here soon that’s going to be bringing natural gas over. You’re using natural gas now to fuel some of your efforts here but also to create a propane and ethane facility here”…
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Sunoco Hands over Keys to Philly Refinery after 146 Years

As MDN reported in early July, Sunoco (about to be purchased by Energy Transfer Partners), signed a joint venture deal with the Carlyle Group, a Washington, D.C. private equity firm, to keep Sunoco’s Philadelphia oil refinery open (see this MDN story). The deal will save 850 jobs. The reason the deal happened at all? The Marcellus Shale.

On Wednesday, Sunoco handed over the ceremonial keys to the plant to Carlyle. Sunoco maintains a one-third interest in the refinery, and Carlyle will be the new operator.

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