Consolidated Plans To Buy Rest Of CNX, Sell $4.5 Billion Of Debt, Stock

Date : 03/22/2010 @ 7:08AM
Source : Dow Jones News
Stock : Cnx Gas Corp (CXG)
Quote : 38.24  0.0 (0.00%) @ 2:05AM

Consolidated Plans To Buy Rest Of CNX, Sell $4.5 Billion Of Debt, Stock

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Consol Energy Inc. (CNX) announced plans to buy the remaining 17% of CNX Gas Corp. (CXG) it doesn't already own for about $965 million as the coal company said it intends to sell at least $4.5 billion worth of stock and debt to help fund that buy and the pending $3.48 billion acquisition of Dominion Resources Inc.'s (D) natural-gas business.

The fourth-largest U.S. coal producer said Sunday night that T. Rowe Price Group Inc. (TROW) has agreed to tender its 9.5 million shares of CNX Gas--or about 37% of what Consol doesn't already own--to a tender offer Consol expects to launch at a price of $38.25 a share. That's a 24% premium to Friday's closing price. The outstanding stake in Consol is about $965 million.

To finance that planned purchase and the deal announced a week ago for Dominion's natural-gas assets--which are similar to those held by CNX--Consol said Monday it would sell at least $1.75 billion worth of shares and $2.75 billion of 7- and 10-year notes. Consol's market value is about $8.5 billion.

The Dominion deal is seen as helping Consol diversify away from coal and mitigate the impact of potential carbon regulation. The deal would add to its existing gas operations and make Consol one of the largest participants in the Marcellus shale formation, a huge gas field below West Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York.

Shares of Consol closed Friday at $45.55 and were inactive premarket. The stock is up 58% in the past year, slightly more than the broader market.

   -By Nathan Becker, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2855;; 

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