Startup Chisholm Energy Holdings LLC, led by a former Range Resources Corp. (NYSE: RRC) executive, said May 15 that its first purchase targets the Delaware Basin in New Mexico, near areas where large and small companies alike have been buying.

The asset, located in Eddy and Lea counties, N.M., includes a substantial amount of “highly attractive, undeveloped acreage with multiple targets in the Bone Spring and Wolfcamp formations,” according to a May 16 press release.

The asset was acquired from a private seller. Terms of the transactions were not disclosed.

Chisholm, based in Fort Worth, Texas, is headed by CEO Mark Whitley, who said on his LinkedIn page he and four former Range Resources employees founded the company.

The team has deep operating experience in multiple unconventional plays across the U.S., including the northern Delaware Basin.

Whitley most recently was senior vice president of the Southwest division of Range. While at Range, he assembled a position in the Barnett Shale of more than 100,000 net acres, and later led Range’s initial efforts in the liquids-rich and dry gas portions of the Marcellus Shale.

Chisholm is backed by a $500 million line of equity from Warburg Pincus, a global private-equity firm where Whitley has been an adviser since 2014.

Formed in May, Chisholm intends to pursue unconventional resource opportunities enabling itto leverage its horizontal drilling and completions expertise. “We are excited to be building a new enterprise focused on the Delaware Basin of New Mexico, where we continue to see many untapped and compelling opportunities,” Whitley said in a news release. “We are pleased to have partnered with Warburg Pincus and to have their support behind our ongoing efforts.”

James R. Levy, a managing director at Warburg Pincus, said he is highly confident in Whitley “and the entire Chisholm team’s ability to create value through their considerable drilling and completions expertise. We look forward to supporting them as they pursue their strategy.”

Vinson & Elkins advised Chisholm Energy on the acquisition.

Chisholm Energy Holdings LLC is unrelated to Chisholm Oil & Gas LLC, which in late March said it and Apollo Global Management LLC had conducted a transaction in the Oklahoma Stack play.

Darren Barbee can be reached at