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Kinder Morgan to Buy El Paso for $38 Billion Including Debt

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El Paso Corp. LNG Storage Tanks
Storage tanks at the El Paso Corp. liquified natural gas Elba Island terminal near Savannah, Georgia. Photographer: Stephen Morton/Bloomberg

Kinder Morgan Inc. agreed to buy El Paso Corp. for about $38 billion in cash, stock and assumed debt, creating the largest U.S. natural gas pipeline network.

The offer is valued at $26.87 per El Paso share, or 37 percent more than their Oct. 14 closing price, Houston-based Kinder Morgan said in a statement today. The offer is comprised of $14.65 in cash, 0.4187 shares of Kinder Morgan, and 0.64 Kinder Morgan warrants, the statement said.

“This once in a lifetime transaction is a win-win opportunity for both companies,” Richard Kinder, who is chairman and chief executive officer of Kinder Morgan and will hold those posts in the combined company, said in the statement. “The transaction is expected to produce immediate shareholder value (upon closing) through strong cash flow accretion and offers significant future growth opportunities.”

Kinder Morgan intends to sell the exploration and production assets of El Paso, the statement said. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2012, creating the fourth-largest energy company in North America, according to the statement.

The combination will result in a cost savings of about $350 million a year, the statement said.

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