Berry Petro Co Acquired for US$4.3 Billion

By Marc Castro

Feb 22, 2013 09:59 AM EST

A merger agreement was settled between Berry Petroleum Company, LINN Energy LLC and LinnCo LLC. LINN Energy and LinnCo would purchase all of Berry's current outstanding shares totaling US$4.3 billion. Also part of the deal would the assumption of debt and is structured as a stock for stock merger between Berry and LinnCo while LINN would acquire the assets of Berry.

The merger is expected to be tax free to Berry shareholders and is the first ever purchase of a public C-Corp by a LLC or MLP.  For its part, LinnCo would propose an increase of current quarterly distribution of 6.2 percent while the current quarterly distribution of LINN would be increased to US$0.77 per unit or US$3.08 per year from US$0.725 per unit or US$2.90 per year.

The major asset of Berry Petroleum Company is its geographic presence in California, specifically in the Permian Basin, the Rockies and East Texas as well as expansion into its new core area in the Uinta Basin.

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