Apache to Divest Some Oil, Gas Assets for $1.4B

By Features Dow Jones Newswires

Apache Corp. (APA) said it agreed to sell some oil-and-gas assets in southern Louisiana and the Anadarko Basin in Texas and Oklahoma for roughly $1.4 billion in two separate deals.

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The divestitures of the noncore assets are part of the exploration and production company's broader effort to focus on shale drilling in the U.S.

In a prepared statement before the company's investor update Thursday, Chairman and Chief Executive G. Steven Farris said proceeds from the deals are mostly targeted to fund Apache's 2014 leasehold acquisition program. Mr. Farris said the program "has added significant acreage within our primary focus areas."

The identities of the buyers weren't provided. Both deals are expected to close during the fourth quarter.

For next year, Apache projects its North American onshore production will increase 8% to 12%, and forecasts capital spending for production projects will reach roughly $4 billion.

Earlier this month Apache reported swinging to a third-quarter loss on write-downs of its oil and gas assets, resulting from lower commodities prices, as well as other one-time tax-related items.

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The company, under pressure from activist investor Jana Partners LLC, has been considering a possible sale or spinoff of its international operations to focus on shale drilling in the U.S. Of the $2.06 billion in charges during the third quarter, about half were related to repatriating cash or plans to do so.