ConocoPhillips is considering a bid for CrownRock, a private equity backed player in the Permian Basin, following major moves by ExxonMobil and Chevron.
Reuters reported the speculation today, noting that CrownRock went up for sale in October. The company may be valued at $10-15 billion.
Earlier this month, Exxon announced the all-stock $59.5 billion acquisition of Pioneer Natural Resources. Chevron then followed up with the announcement of another $53bn all-stock deal to buy Hess.
Conoco is not alone in its pursuit of CrownRock, though. Bloomberg reported last week that Devon Energy was considering a deal for the Lime Rock joint venture, which is focused on the North Midland Basin, in Texas’ Permian Basin.
Bloomberg also reported Devon was considering a merger with Marathon Oil. Devon was worth around $32bn, it said, and Marathon $17.5bn.
Reuters’ sources said Marathon had also expressed interest in acquiring CrownRock. The news agency said the Marathon-Devon merger had come apart in August, because the sides could not agree terms.
The deals are notable in that they command high price tags – and also in that they are focused largely on domestic US shale opportunities.