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Crescent Point Agrees to Buy Ute Energy for $784 Million

Nov. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Crescent Point Energy Corp., the most acquisitive Canadian energy company this year, agreed to buy closely held Ute Energy Upstream Holdings LLC for $784 million in cash, its first purchase in Utah’s Uinta Basin.

Ute Energy produces the equivalent of 7,800 barrels of oil a day in the basin, Calgary-based Crescent Point said in a statement today. Ute is 51 percent owned by the Ute Indian Tribe and 49 percent owned by Houston-based private-equity company Quantum Energy Partners, according to its website.

Crescent Point recovers light oil primarily from tight formations in Saskatchewan by flooding reservoirs with water. The company may use its technology in the Uinta Basin oil shale, where Ute was evaluating water floods, said Mason Granger, who manages C$500 million ($502 million) at Sentry Investments Inc.

“The reality is that most of the obvious consolidation targets in Canada, they had bought,” Granger, whose investments include Crescent Point, said in a phone interview today from Toronto.

The Uinta Basin opportunity is a “new core area for Crescent Point” and consistent with the company’s strategy of acquiring “high-quality, large oil-in-place pools with long-term upside potential,” Scott Saxberg, chief executive officer of the company, said in the statement.

Seeking Targets

The company, which also operates in North Dakota and Montana, was looking for more U.S. targets as part of a continental search for assets, Saxberg, 44, said in an Oct. 18 interview at his Calgary office. The shares fell 0.3 percent to C$41.44 at the close in Toronto and have dropped 7.7 percent this year.

Crescent Point acquired three Calgary-based oil and gas companies and made three other purchases this year in Western Canada, topping four acquisitions by Pacific Rubiales Energy Corp. and three by Mitsubishi Corp., figures compiled by Bloomberg show.

Crescent Point will increase its 2012 capital spending by C$150 million to C$1.4 billion. The transaction, which includes the assumption of about $77 million of debt, is expected to close by Nov. 30.

Bank of Montreal and Royal Bank of Canada are advising Crescent Point, and Evercore Partners Inc. is the “strategic adviser,” Crescent Point said. Tudor Pickering Holt & Co. is advising Ute and Credit Suisse Group AG is the “strategic adviser.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Rebecca Penty in Calgary at rpenty@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Susan Warren at susanwarren@bloomberg.net

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