Thailand’s biggest coal miner and exporter Banpu Pcl is acquiring a US shale gas portfolio worth $210 million, its fifth such overseas investment play.
Banpu signed a purchase and sale agreement to acquire an operatorship position and gas portfolio in the Northeast Marcellus shale gas play of Pennsylvania.
This agreement represents Banpu’s fifth investment in the US shale gas business in line with its expansion strategy to acquire interests in cash-generating assets, according to its filing to the Stock Exchange of Thailand on Monday.
Banpu’s chief executive Somruedee Chaimongkol said, this acquisition provides Banpu nearly 80 per cent of working interest in 112 wells with the net production interest of 100 million cubic feet per day.
The shale gas resource has proven reserves of 414 billion cubic feet over 32,350 acres, which will bolster Banpu’s position as a major player in the Marcellus shale area.
Previously, Banpu acquired a 29.4-per-cent stake in the Chaffee Corners Joint Exploration Agreement (JEA) in April last year. Its net interest in the Chaffee Corners JEA is equivalent to proven reserves of 156 billion cubic feet of dry natural gas.
The CEO told local media that its gas sale volumes was around 21 million cubic feet per day last year and most of them served the US domestic demand.
Banpu is aggressively diversifying its business into upstream and clean energy businesses. Last month, it announced the investment of S$75 million ($55.6 million) in Singaporean photovoltaic (PV) firm Sunreap, backed by Goldman Sachs. It targets to build 300 MW of PV capacity over the next five years.