Diamondback Energy (FANG) Buying QEP Resources (QEP) For About $2.2 Billion: Details

By Amit Chowdhry ● December 21, 2020
  • Diamondback Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: FANG) announced it is buying QEP Resources (NYSE: QEP) for approximately $2.2 billion. These are the details.

Today Diamondback Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: FANG) and QEP Resources (NYSE: QEP) announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Diamondback will acquire QEP in an all-stock transaction valued at approximately $2.2 billion, including QEP’s net debt of $1.6 billion as of September 30, 2020. 

The consideration is going to consist of 0.05 shares of Diamondback common stock for each share of QEP common stock, representing an implied value to each QEP stockholder of $2.29 per share based on the closing price of Diamondback common stock on December 18, 2020. The deal was unanimously approved by the Board of Directors of each company.
The highlights of the deal include:

1.) Adds material Tier-1 Midland Basin inventory that competes for capital immediately in Diamondback’s portfolio

2.) Accretive on all relevant 2021 per share metrics including cash flow per share, free cash flow per share, and leverage, before accounting for synergies

3.) Lowers 2021 reinvestment ratio and enhances the ability to generate free cash flow, de-lever, and return capital to stockholders

4.) Tangible annual synergies of at least $60 – $80 million comprised of G&A savings, cost of capital and interest expense savings, improved capital efficiency from high-graded development, physical adjacencies to increase lateral lengths, significant adjacent Permian midstream assets, and a significant majority of Diamondback’s capital will now be allocated to the Northern Midland Basin.

QEP’s Williston assets will be considered non-core and will be used to harvest cash flow or they will be divested, pending market conditions with potential sale proceeds to be used towards debt reduction

The pending QEP acquisition — together with the previously announced pending acquisition of assets from Guidon Operating LLC — will bring Diamondback’s total leasehold interests to over 276,000 net surface acres in the Midland Basin (429,000 Midland and Delaware Basin net acres).

Under the terms of the definitive merger agreement, stockholders of QEP will receive 0.05 shares of Diamondback common stock in exchange for each share of QEP common stock, representing an implied value to each QEP stockholder of $2.29 per share based on the closing price of Diamondback common stock on December 18, 2020. And upon closing the transaction and excluding the impact of shares to be issued in the previously announced acquisition of assets from Guidon, Diamondback stockholders will own approximately 92.8% of the combined company, and QEP stockholders will own approximately 7.2%.

Diamondback is remaining committed to conservative financial management and is expected to maintain its Investment Grade credit ratings pro forma for the transaction.

The transaction has been unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of Diamondback and QEP and is expected to be completed in the first quarter or early in the second quarter of 2021, subject to the approval of QEP stockholders, the satisfaction of certain regulatory approvals, and other customary closing conditions.

Upon the closing of the deal, Diamondback’s Board of Directors and executive team will remain unchanged.

KEY QUOTES:

“The acquisition of QEP also checks every box of Diamondback’s corporate development strategy. The business combination with QEP and the Guidon transaction are accretive on all relevant 2021 financial metrics including free cash flow per share, cash flow per share and leverage, even before accounting for synergies. Most importantly, the addition of this Tier-1 resource competes for capital right away in Diamondback’s current portfolio, and we will now be able to allocate most of our capital to the high-returning Midland Basin for the foreseeable future. Pro forma for these transactions, Diamondback is also expected to maintain its Investment Grade status, ensuring access to capital. As stated in past public commentary, Diamondback does not need to participate in industry consolidation to simply get bigger. We participate in corporate development opportunities that we firmly believe will increase the long-term value of our stockholders’ investment.”

“Diamondback’s expectations for capital allocation in 2021 remain unchanged: we are expecting to hold pro forma fourth quarter 2020 oil production flat through 2021 in the most capital efficient manner possible, which has improved with today’s announcements. Our differentiated cost structure, combined with the addition of this top quartile resource, will allow Diamondback to consistently generate free cash flow and grow our return of capital program to our stockholders.”

— Travis Stice, Chief Executive Officer of Diamondback

“We believe that this strategic merger with Diamondback, along with the addition of the Guidon assets, provides our shareholders with an exciting investment opportunity, now and in the future. The large contiguous Tier-1 acreage position in the Northern Midland Basin is expected to lead to operational synergies and deliver capital efficiencies beyond what each company could achieve independently. I believe in this combination and look forward to being a long-term shareholder and watching the value of the company grow with time.”

“I also want to take this opportunity to recognize QEP’s employees and publicly thank them for their dedication and hard work in driving QEP’s success. Their tireless efforts over the past several years led to a culture of peer leading operational excellence, safety and efficiency.”

— Tim Cutt, President and Chief Executive Officer of QEP