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Shell sells last of its Haynesville position

Royal Dutch Shell is officially moving out of the gassy Haynesville shale after selling its last package of acreage to a private Houston firm.

Houston-based Castleton Resources, which primarily focuses on the Haynesville in East Texas and Louisiana, will scoop up about 55,000 net acres from Shell that’s currently producing more than 100,000 cubic feet of natural gas per day. The companies are not revealing the sale price.

Shell previously sold most of its Haynesville position five years ago, but still had some piecemeal remaining acreage.

“The divestment is part of Shell’s ongoing strategy to optimize its shale portfolio and direct capital toward developing our high-margin assets located in the Permian, as well as in Canada and Argentina,” a Shell spokesman said in a prepared statement.

The deal increases Castleton’s Haynesville scale by about 40 percent. Castleton was founded three years ago when its private investment sponsor, Castleton Commodities International, bought a sizable Haynesville position from Anadarko Petroleum.

Tokyo Gas acquired a 30 percent stake in Castleton Resources two years ago and, through a new injection of capital with this deal, Tokyo Gas’ ownership of Castleton will rise to 46 percent.

RELATED: Rebounding Haynesville shale breaks 2011 production record

Tokyo Gas is interested in acquiring more shale gas for sale on global liquefied natural gas markets, including in Japan.


Jordan Blum: Follow Jordan on: jdblum23
Jordan Blum is a senior energy reporter at the Houston Chronicle since 2015. He has extensively covered the industry from the 2014 bust in oil prices to the more recent boom in West Texas’ Permian Basin. He has written about everything from Texas’ national lead in renewable wind power to the Houston area’s growing dominance in petrochemical and plastics manufacturing.
Previously, Jordan was an award-winning reporter at The Advocate in Baton Rouge and New Orleans as a statehouse reporter and education writer, and then as the newspaper’s Washington Bureau chief. Jordan is a New Orleans native who graduated from Texas Christian University with a journalism degree before going back to work at daily newspapers in Louisiana.
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