Home Commodities Diamondback Energy is close to buying Endeavor in a $25 billion US oil deal

Diamondback Energy is close to buying Endeavor in a $25 billion US oil deal

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Diamondback Energy is closing in on a deal to buy Endeavor Energy Resources for about $25 billion, according to people familiar with the matter, edging out ConocoPhilips in a race for one of the most sought-after private oil producers in the United States.

The acquisition, which could be announced as soon as Monday, would transform Midland-based Diamondback into one of the largest players in the sprawling Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico, the largest oil field in the United States.

Diamondback is putting the finishing touches on a deal, according to the people, after weeks of competing with Conoco to take over Endeavor, owned by wildcat billionaire Autry Stephens.

Beating Conoco, which has a market capitalization of about $132 billion, would be a big win for Diamondback, which is valued at just $27 billion, after losing to a larger rival, Occidental Petroleum, in its bid. to buy CrownRock last year.

Occidental, which is backed by Warren Buffett, announced a $12 billion deal in December for CrownRock, another listed private producer.

Diamondback, Endeavor and Conoco did not respond to requests for comment. The Wall Street Journal first reported on the advanced talks on Sunday.

The deal would be the latest in a wave of large-scale mergers and acquisitions in the U.S. shale patch, as companies seek to snap up the best remaining drilling acreage.

ExxonMobil announced a $60 billion deal in October to buy Pioneer Natural Resources, the largest player in the Permian. Shortly after, Chevron announced its $53 billion acquisition of Hess, which has assets in North Dakota's Bakken shale and a stake in the largest oil find in the last decade, off the coast of Guyana in North America. South.

Last month, Chesapeake Energy agreed to buy Southwestern Energy for $7.4 billion to create the nation's largest natural gas producer.

Endeavor was founded by Stephens in 2000, from a business he built from a solitary platform in 1979. Along with CrownRock and Mewbourne Oil, it grew to become one of the country's leading private operators.

The company has been on the market off and on over the years, but no potential buyer has ever offered enough to satisfy Stephens.

Like other private players, Endeavor has sharply increased production in recent years as publicly traded rivals have slowed their drilling under pressure from Wall Street to return cash to shareholders. It produced around 400,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day towards the end of last year, more than many public players.

Rising production from private oil groups like Endeavor has helped boost U.S. output to record levels. The country pumped 13.3 million barrels of oil per day in November, the latest month for which data is available from the Energy Information Administration, more than any country in history.

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