DALLAS XTO Energy Inc. said Tuesday it is acquiring privately held Hunt Petroleum Corp. for $4.19 billion in cash and stock, in a deal made more attractive by high oil and gas prices.
XTO Energy said the deal includes $2.6 billion in cash and 23.5 million shares of XTO stock. The stock portion of the deal is valued at about $1.6 billion, or $67.50 per XTO share.
The company said it would pay the $2.6 billion cash portion from its cash flow and borrowing, although it didn't provide a breakdown.
The sale would mean the end to the independent Hunt company, which was started by famed Texas wildcatter H.L. Hunt, who was considered one of the wealthiest men in America before his death in 1974. His heirs have fought over billions of dollars in trust fund assets.
XTO Chairman and Chief Executive Bob R. Simpson said he believes the Hunt family wanted to sell the company before a new administration in 2009 could raise taxes on gains.
Fort Worth-based XTO produces oil and natural gas in 12 states, including Utah.