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%.
Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett released his 50th annual letter to shareholders. The Oracle of Omaha thinks the next 50 years will be great and knows who will replace him. More
Potential presidential candidate says that improvement in unemployment rate is due to millions of jobless not being counted. More
With the death of Leonard Nimoy, the actor who played Star Trek's Spock, we remember his character's legacy: The technology we use every day. More
Self-described 'Last of the Mohicans' is still fixing typewriters after 55 years. More