Three companies, including industry giants Royal Dutch Shell and Chevron Corp., will pay about $3.3 billion for acreage that produced about 21,000 barrels of liquids and 90 million cubic feet of natural gas a day during the second quarter.
That price is well below earlier estimates of as much as $6 billion for the Permian sale, although Chesapeake will retain about 470,000 net acres for future sale or development.
“I attribute the shortfall to the buyers' awareness of CHK's situation more than anything else,” Weiss said.
Chesapeake also is selling midstream assets in deals expected to net about $3 billion.
Global Infrastructure Partners — which bought Chesapeake's stake in former pipeline subsidiary Access Midstream Partners LP for $2 billion in July — will pay an additional $2.7 billion for more of Chesapeake's pipeline holdings, with three other midstream deals expected to net Chesapeake another $300 million.
The other sales announced Wednesday are four transactions involving noncore acreage in Ohio's Utica Shale and various other areas. Chesapeake will earn about $600 million on those deals.
McClendon acknowledged the deals could result in some employees leaving Chesapeake.
“We very much appreciate the skill, effort and dedication of our midstream and Permian employees over the years, and we look forward to their continued success as they are either reassigned inside Chesapeake or pursue new opportunities with the buyers of our assets or elsewhere in the industry,” McClendon said.