July 14, 2010 / 6:25 PM / 10 years ago

Chesapeake may attract Asian investors to assets

* No more offerings planned in near future

* Could attract Asian investors to commercial bank group (In U.S. dollars)

CALGARY, Alberta, July 14 (Reuters) - Chesapeake Energy Corp (CHK.N) may attract more Asian investors to its banking group or as buyers of interests it has on the block, but the U.S. natural gas producer has no immediate plans for another stock sale, an executive said on Wednesday.

Chesapeake, which last month sold $900 million of preferred shares to a investment group that included Asian sovereign wealth funds, aims to sell a 20 percent interest in its Marcellus shale gas operations in the Eastern United States and find a partner for its Eagle Ford shale play in Texas.

“We’re not looking to secure more incremental capital in terms of debt or equity securities in aggregate,” Chesapeake Vice-President Jeff Mobley said after speaking to a TD Newcrest investor conference in Calgary, Alberta.

“It’s possible that Asian investors might one day participate in our bank group. Our preferred capital is all the equity we intend to raise in the near future, but it’s possible that some Asian investors might look to participate in some of the monetization transactions.”

The joint venture plans are part of a major financial initiative the company announced in May aimed at lifting the stock price and reducing debt amid weak natural gas prices.

In June, China Investment Corp, Korea Investment Corp and Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings [TEM.UL] were among investors in Chesapeake’s preferred offering.

“We recognize that the center of the financial world is gravitating more and more to Asia and we think it’s prudent to begin to develop relationships with investors in Asia,” Mobley said.

Early this year, Chesapeake signed a $2.25 billion deal with French oil major Total SA (TOTF.PA) to help develop its Barnett Shale properties in Texas.

It gave Total a first look at the other interests it is offering, but as a courtesy rather than as a right of first refusal, Mobley said. Chesapeake is in talks with others as well.

It hopes to land a partner for the Eagle Ford shale development by the end of the current quarter or early in the fourth, he said.

Chesapeake shares were up 5 cents at $21.46 on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Jeffrey Jones; editing by Peter Galloway)

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