Leading US independent ConocoPhillips on 29 May announced the agreed takeover of compatriot Marathon Oil in a $22.5bn all-stock transaction which CEO Ryan Lance says is anticipated to close in Q4. This brings the total of US upstream M&A deals announced over the past year to over $200bn.

And, as with almost all other such deals, the key interest of Conoco in acquiring Marathon is to bulk up on domestic shale. Marathon’s assets are spread across four shale basins. The firm is among the top producers in both the Eagle Ford and Bakken with 154,000 boe/d and 112,000 boe/d of 2023 net output. It also has around 50,000 boe/d in both Oklahoma’s Anadarko basin and in the 6mn b/d Permian, with the latter forming the fastest growing part of its portfolio. (CONTINUED - 1467 WORDS)