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American Energy to spend $4.25 billion on acreage in three states

American Energy Partners LP is spending more than $4 billion to acquire acreage in three U.S. resource plays.
By Jay F. Marks, Business Writer Published: June 10, 2014
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Aubrey McClendon is continuing to rebuild his energy empire.

The Chesapeake Energy Corp. co-founder is taking his American Energy Partners LP into two new resource plays while expanding its holdings in Ohio’s Utica Shale.

McClendon’s new company has amassed about $10 billion in committed equity and debt capital over the past nine months.

It announced Monday it is spending more than $4 billion to build on its position in the Utica Shale and establish a foothold in west Texas’ Permian Basin and the Marcellus Shale in West Virginia.

American Energy will pay $2.5 billion to acquire about 63,000 net acres in the southern Permian Basin from affiliates of Denver-based Enduring Resources LLC.

Those properties are expected to produce about 16,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day by the time the deal closes.

Enduring Resources has been using four rigs to develop that acreage, but American Energy-Permian Basin LLC plans to boost operations to as many as eight rigs by the end of 2015.

The company expects to drill up to 1,750 net wells there over the next decade, while looking to increase its holdings in the oil-rich Permian with future acquisitions.

American Energy affiliates also will pay $1.75 billion in a pair of transactions with East Resources Inc. and an unnamed private company.

American Energy-Utica LLC will add about 27,000 net acres in Monroe County, Ohio, marking its seventh major acquisition in the play first discovered by Chesapeake under McClendon’s guidance.

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