(Chesapeake Energy, KKR story updated for Carrizo Oil & Gas deal, analyst commentary)
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- If there is one man synonymous with the shale land grab it has been Chesapeake Energy (CHK - Get Report) CEO Aubrey McClendon, but Chesapeake has run into a problem recently (no, not the Rolling Stone article): It's running out of money to acquire shale acreage.
McClendon may have happened upon a solution: He's becoming private equity's shale real estate agent as private-equity players like Blackstone Group and KKR (KKR - Get Report) become much more active in shale investment.Blackstone recently invested in natural gas export play Cheniere Energy (LNG), while KKR recently acquired oil and gas company Samson Investment. Chesapeake and KKR announced on Tuesday a $250 million joint venture through which Chesapeake will source, own and manage shale assets that will provide future revenue royalty streams. KKR will provide $225 million of the $250 million in cash to buy up the royalty assets. Details in a press release were scant, but with KKR putting in the lion's share of the money to buy up the shale acreage royalty rights, it would stand to reason that KKR will receive a lion's share of the revenue from the assets. That's why a cynic could argue that Chesapeake Energy, known by detractors as a shale asset "flipper," has now become private equity's shale real estate agent. As it is