Bloomberg News

Samson Says Prospects of Selling Company to KKR Are ‘an Unknown’

November 18, 2011

Nov. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Samson Investment Co., which has been in exclusive talks with KKR & Co. about a potential sale of the closely held oil and gas producer, said prospects for completing a transaction are “an unknown.”

“These markets are very uncertain and whether any transaction can be completed that recognizes the value of our assets and employees is an unknown,” Dennis Neill, Samson’s spokesman, said he told the mayor of Tulsa during a business trip to Indianapolis two weeks ago. Neill spoke to Bloomberg in a telephone interview today.

Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett said in an interview today that Samson is pursuing a joint venture of its assets in the Bakken oil formation in lieu of a sale of the company, citing a conversation with Neill. The mayor didn’t know whether KKR was involved in the joint venture talks.

“Joint ventures have been one viable option” for companies doing business in the Bakken, Neill said.

Samson has said it was in discussions with KKR about a sale of all or part of the Tulsa, Oklahoma-based company. Neill declined to say today whether a potential deal has been called off.

Kristi Huller, a spokeswoman with New York-based KKR, declined to comment.

Samson has operations in 18 states, as well as the Gulf of Mexico, Chief Executive Officer Stacy Schusterman said in a March presentation.

The company may be worth $8 billion to $10 billion if it were sold, which would be the biggest leveraged buyout of an oil and gas producer, people with knowledge of the discussions said earlier this month.

--Editors: Susan Warren, Tina Davis

To contact the reporter on this story: Mike Lee in Dallas at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Susan Warren at

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