Oasis, Whiting Near All-Stock Merger

The rival North Dakota shale drillers have a combined market value of $6 billion.

Oasis Petroleum Inc. OAS 8.18% and Whiting Petroleum Corp. WLL 5.67% are close to a deal to merge, according to people familiar with the matter.

The all-stock tie-up between the rival North Dakota shale drillers could be unveiled early this week, the people said, assuming the talks don’t fall apart. The companies combined would be worth roughly $6 billion, given Oasis’ market value of $2.8 billion and Whiting’s, which stands at $3.3 billion.

It would be the first significant tie-up among oil companies in several months, after a string of them in recent years, and comes as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine roils energy markets and causes crude prices to surge.

Oasis and Whiting have both been streamlining their holdings recently and benefited from rising oil prices in the past few months along with the rest of the industry. Both shares have been rising as oil prices have topped $100 a barrel in past weeks, and combining could help the companies take continued advantage of the surge.

Both companies had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after oil prices collapsed in 2020, following the worst of the pandemic-related economic downturn.

Last year, Oasis bought assets in the Bakken shale region from Diamondback Energy Inc. in a transaction initially valued at $745 million. It also sold its holdings in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, the most active U.S. oil field, for more than $400 million.

Last month, pipeline operator Crestwood Equity Partners LP finalized the acquisition of Oasis Midstream Partners LP, formed by Oasis Petroleum, in a deal valued at about $1.1 billion.

Meantime, Whiting divested leasehold interests and other assets in the DJ Basin in Colorado last year and has snapped up more assets in the Bakken.

So far this year roughly $35 billion worth of global energy deals have been announced, compared with $42 billion at this time last year. World-wide deal activity across all sectors has been muted partly due to market volatility and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and is down roughly 28% from a year ago.

Source: https://www.wsj.com/articles/oasis-whiting-near-all-stock-merger-11646612476
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