NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Chevron Corp., aiming to expand its holdings in the Marcellus Shale natural gas region of Pennsylvania, said Tuesday it will acquire Atlas Energy Inc. for $4.3 billion.
The deal includes a cash purchase of $3.2 billion and the acquisition of $1.1 billion worth of Atlas' debt, said Chevron.
Chevron vice chairman George Kirkland said the acquisition will provide his company with a foothold in the Marcellus region.
"We are acquiring a company that has one of the premier acreage positions in the prolific Marcellus," said Kirkland, in a press release.
Atlas' shares are being valued at $43.34 per share, said Chevron, a 37% premium from its Monday closing price.
"All of our shareholders should benefit from this sale and upon its completion, Atlas will have achieved a return of well over 800% since its initial public offering less than 6-1/2 years ago," said Edward Cohen, chief executive of Atlas Energy, in a press release.
Companies specializing in natural gas production rose in pre-market trading, on speculation that the Chevon-Atlas merger means good news for the sector.
Range Resources (RRC) rose more than 5% about one hour before the opening bell. Cabot Oil & Gas (COG) and Southwestern Energy (SWN) were both up more than 4%.Chesapeak Energy Corp. (CHK, Fortune 500) gained about 2%.
A Chinese consortium of internet gaming and advertising firms has offered to buy the Opera browser for $1.2 billion. More
Fed Chair Janet Yellen's testimony highlighted concerns about the most recent volatility in global markets as well as the economy's gains. More
Amazon's new terms of service for Lumberyard won't apply if zombies attack. More
Instead of asking how long your savings will last, ask how long you should plan for your nest egg to last so it can support you throughout retirement. More