Devon Energy (DVN) and WPX Energy (WPX) to Combine in Merger of Equals

September 28, 2020 7:00 AM

Devon Energy (NYSE: DVN) and WPX Energy (NYSE: WPX) today announced they have entered into an agreement to combine in an all-stock merger of equals transaction. The strategic combination will create a leading unconventional oil producer in the U.S., with an asset base underpinned by a premium acreage position in the economic core of the Delaware Basin. The combined company, which will be named Devon Energy, will benefit from enhanced scale, improved margins, higher free cash flow and the financial strength to accelerate the return of cash to shareholders through an industry-first “fixed plus variable” dividend strategy.

TRANSACTION DETAILS

Under the terms of the agreement, WPX shareholders will receive a fixed exchange ratio of 0.5165 shares of Devon common stock for each share of WPX common stock owned. The exchange ratio, together with closing prices for Devon and WPX on Sept. 25, 2020, results in an enterprise value for the combined entity of approximately $12 billion. Upon completion of the transaction, Devon shareholders will own approximately 57 percent of the combined company and WPX shareholders will own approximately 43 percent of the combined company on a fully diluted basis.

The transaction, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021, has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies. Funds managed by EnCap Investments L.P. own approximately 27 percent of the outstanding shares of WPX and have entered into a support agreement to vote in favor of the transaction. The closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including approvals by Devon and WPX shareholders.

CEO COMMENTARY

“This merger is a transformational event for Devon and WPX as we unite our complementary assets, operating capabilities and proven management teams to maximize our business in today’s environment, while positioning our combined company to create value for years to come,” said Dave Hager, Devon’s president and CEO. “Bringing together our asset bases will drive immediate synergies and enable the combined company to accelerate free cash flow growth and return of capital to shareholders. In addition to highly complementary assets, Devon and WPX have similar values, and a disciplined returns-oriented focus, reinforcing our belief that this is an ideal business combination.”

“This merger-of-equals strengthens our confidence that we will achieve all of our five-year targets outlined in late 2019,” said Rick Muncrief, WPX’s chairman and CEO. “The combined company will be one of the largest unconventional energy producers in the U.S. and with our enhanced scale and strong financial position, we can now accomplish these objectives for shareholders more quickly and efficiently. We will create value for shareholders of both companies through the disciplined management of our combined assets and an unwavering focus on profitable, per-share growth.”

STRATEGIC RATIONALE

LEADERSHIP AND HEADQUARTERS

Following the merger, the board of directors will consist of 12 members, 7 directors from Devon and 5 from WPX including the lead independent director. Dave Hager will be appointed executive chairman of the board, and Rick Muncrief will be named president and CEO. The combined company’s executive team will include Jeff Ritenour as executive vice president and chief financial officer, Clay Gaspar as executive vice president and chief operating officer, David Harris as executive vice president and chief corporate development officer, Dennis Cameron as executive vice president and general counsel, and Tana Cashion as senior vice president of human resources. The combined company will be headquartered in Oklahoma City.

PRELIMINARY PRO FORMA 2021 OUTLOOK

Detailed forward-looking guidance for the full-year 2021 will be provided upon closing of the transaction. Based on current supply and demand dynamics, product inventory levels, and other leading economic indicators, the company expects to design capital activity plans to maintain base production.

The maintenance capital requirements to keep oil production flat in 2021 versus 2020 fourth-quarter exit rates of greater than 280,000 barrels per day is estimated at approximately $1.7 billion. Pro forma for cost synergies, these maintenance capital requirements in 2021 are estimated to be funded at $33 WTI and $2.75 Henry Hub pricing.

ADVISORS

J.P. Morgan Securities LLC is serving as financial advisor and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is serving as legal advisor to Devon. Citi is serving as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP is serving as legal advisor to WPX. Vinson & Elkins LLP is serving as legal advisor to EnCap Investments L.P.CONFERENCE CALL WEBCAST AND ADDITIONAL MATERIALS

Devon and WPX will discuss this transaction today on a conference call and webcast at 7:30 a.m. Central Time (8:30 a.m. Eastern Time). Institutional investors and analysts are invited to participate in the call by dialing (833) 241-4259, or (647) 689-4210 for international calls using conference ID: 9744729. Other interested parties, including individual investors, members of the media and employees of Devon and WPX, are encouraged to participate via webcast. The webcast may be accessed from Devon's home page at www.devonenergy.com or WPX’s home page at www.wpxenergy.com.

Categories

Corporate News Hot Corp. News Hot M&A Mergers and Acquisitions

Next Articles