PDC Energy to develop Utica Shale holdings alone

Associated Press Published: September 19, 2012

DENVER (AP) — PDC Energy Inc. said Wednesday that it now plans to develop its holdings in southeast Ohio's Utica Shale formation alone and is no longer actively looking for a joint venture partner. Its shares fell 6 percent in afternoon trading.

The Denver-based independent oil and gas company said it received a variety of proposals from potential partners in August and early September, but they didn't measure up to its expectations.

PDC said it believes that developing the about 45,000 net acres by itself will result in greater long-term value for the company, especially in light of the very high initial production rates and high liquids content from recent well results recently announced by other companies that are drilling nearby.

PDC said it expects to invest about $50 million in the Utica holdings next year and fund that investment with a combination of cash and debt.

PDC shares fell $1.96, or 6 percent, to $30.96 in afternoon trading. Its shares have fallen 23 percent since peaking for the year at $40.26 on March 19. They traded as low as $15.08 in October 2011.

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