July 9 (Reuters) - Private equity firm KKR & Co LP and energy-focused peer Riverstone Holdings LLC will form a U.S. oil and natural gas venture that would be one of the largest producers in the Barnett Shale in Texas, they said on Wednesday.
The new entity, Trinity River Energy LLC, will be headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, and led by Chris Hammack, who heads Legend Production Holdings LLC, the Riverstone entity that is contributing assets to the joint venture. The Barnett region is known for its shale oil and natural gas resources.
KKR is providing assets from its natural resources funds, which were formed in 2010. At the end of March it had completed six separate transactions, acquiring nearly $1.2 billion of assets in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi.
Production from those assets was approximately 130 million cubic feet equivalent per day (MMcfe/d). They are operated by Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Premier Natural Resources LLC. The announcement about Trinity made no reference to the future of that partnership.
KKR has traditionally partnered with other operators in its oil and gas investments. Last March, it announced another partnership for its oil and gas platform with Fleur de Lis Energy LLC.
Fleur de Lis and KKR will work together on other acquisitions. KKR said in its statement on Trinity that future assets “will not be acquired by or otherwise form part of Trinity”.
KKR has invested or committed about $4.3 billion to oil and gas investments since 2009. (Reporting by Mike Stone in New York; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)