KKR nears a Samson deal

City A.M. Reporter
PRIVATE equity company KKR & Co is in exclusive talks to buy most of Samson Investment Co, a privately held US oil and gas company, in what could be the biggest buyout of the year.

The private equity firm is not likely to want Samson’s Gulf of Mexico assets, one source said.

While the whole company could be worth $8bn to $10bn, KKR’s bid without the Gulf Of Mexico assets is likely to be in the range of $7bn, that source said.

KKR is still doing due diligence and the deal could fall apart, sources said.

But if it succeeds, the takeover could be the biggest-ever leveraged buyout of an oil and gas company.

Family-owned Samson, based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, operates more than 4,000 wells and has interests in more than 11,000 wells, according to the company’s website.

It has access to potentially lucrative shale gas assets that may have tempted KKR to enter the oil and gas sector, which has been generally avoided by private equity until recently due to its links to volatile commodity prices.

The sale process of Samson has been underway for months. Sources said last month that the company hired investment bank Jefferies Group to advise on the process.