Occidental in Talks to Buy Permian Producer CrownRock

(Reuters) — Occidental Petroleum is one of the finalists in the auction for CrownRock, an energy producer in the west Texas area of the Permian basin, with a bid of more than $10 billion, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

The sale process could see an outcome in a few days, the source said.

Reuters had previously reported that ConocoPhillips was considering an offer for CrownRock while Diamondback Energy, Devon Energy, Marathon Oil and Continental Resources were also studying potential bids.

Sources told Reuters in September that private equity-backed CrownRock, which is led by Texas billionaire businessman Timothy Dunn, had initiated discussions with investment banks about hiring advisers to run a sale process that will kick off by early 2024.

Occidental did not immediately respond to a Reuters' request for comment on Wednesday, while CrownRock could not be immediately reached.

Pressure on oil and gas producers to increase their size through purchases intensified after Exxon clinched a $60 billion deal to buy Pioneer Natural Resources and Chevron inked a $53 billion agreement to acquire Hess Corp.

CrownRock's decision to explore a sale underscores how coveted spots are in the lucrative Permian basin, the largest U.S. oilfield, where it operates.

The company owns approximately 86,000 net acres in the northern part of the Midland basin, which is part of the Permian in Texas.

The Wall Street Journal first reported earlier on Wednesday about Occidental's bid to buy CrownRock.

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