Samson Resources II LLC said May 9 it agreed to divest a portion of its Powder River Basin position in exchange for cash and bolt-on acreage.

As part of the agreement, Samson will sell about 7,000 net acres, interest in 17 wells and overriding interests in Converse County, Wyo., that the privately-held E&P considers noncore to its portfolio.

In exchange, an undisclosed buyer has agreed to pay Samson a combination of $44.4 million cash and 15,000 net acres in Johnson County, Wyo. The acreage, which the company said is bolt-on to its core Powder River position, also includes all depths below the Fort Union Formation and is currently undedicated.

The transaction follows a series of A&D activity by Samson as the company strives to focus on balance sheet strength, said Joseph Mills, president and CEO of Samson.

“This sale represents another important step in Samson’s portfolio management strategy of divesting noncore assets and increasing focus on our core assets in the Powder River and Green River Basins of Wyoming,” Mills said in a statement.

In January, Samson closed the sale of all of its Wamsutter assets located in Carbon and Sweetwater counties, Wyo., for $34 million. In addition, Samson closed the sale of its East Texas assets to Rockcliff Energy LLC in September 2017 for $525 million, which resulted in the subsequent payoff of $210 million senior debt.

In late 2017, the company also bought a nonoperating partner's position in 20,000 gross (6,700 net) acres and working interest in 74 wells, of which 62 were operated by Samson, in Converse for an undisclosed amount.

After its latest transaction closes, which the company expects to occur by May 31, Samson said it will own rights to more than 152,000 net acres in the Powder River Basin and about 48,700 net acres in the Green River Basin.

The proceeds of the sale will be used to partially fund the company’s 2018 drilling program and allow Samson to “further capitalize on our robust drilling opportunities,” Mills said.

For 2018, Samson is targeting year-over-year production growth by 20% with a capex of $105 million to $115 million. The company plans to drill about 25 to 30 gross (15 to 20 net) wells on its positions in the Powder River and Green River basins.

The focus in the Powder River Basin will be to further delineate the potential of the Shannon, Frontier, Turner, Niobrara and Mowry formations and the Green River activity will focus on development of its Fort Union/Lewis assets.

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP advised Samson Resources on its pending transaction, which effective date will be April 1.

Emily Patsy can be reached at