Apache selling stake in 2 LNG projects for $2.75B

AP News
Posted: Dec 15, 2014 8:47 AM

HOUSTON (AP) — Apache is selling its stake in two liquefied natural gas projects to Woodside Petroleum Ltd. for $2.75 billion.

The Houston-based oil and gas exploration and production company is selling its ownership in Australian subsidiary Apache Julimar Pty. Ltd. — which owns a 13 percent stake in the Wheatstone LNG project and a 65 percent interest in the area that includes the Julimar/Brunello offshore gas fields and the Balnaves oil development. The deal also includes Apache's 50 percent stake in the Kitimat LNG project and related upstream acreage in the Horn River and Liard natural gas basins in Canada.

Apache Corp. anticipates net proceeds of about $3.7 billion. That includes its expenses between June 30 and the transaction's closing date in the first quarter of 2015. The company may use proceeds to lower debt, buy back stock or for other purposes.

The Kitimat sale is subject to certain operator consents.

Apache said Monday that once the transaction closes, it will still have upstream acreage off the shore of Western Australia in the Carnarvon, Exmouth and Canning basins along with related hydrocarbon reserves and production. Apache will also keep its 49 percent ownership interest in Yara Holdings Nitrates Pty. Ltd. and 10 percent interest in the related ammonium nitrate plant.

The company's stock added $1.16, or 2.1 percent, to $57.60 in premarket trading.