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Rex Energy Announces $175 Million Joint Exploration and Development Agreement in Moraine East and Warrior North Operated Areas

  • Joint exploration and development agreement covers approximately 42,000 acres in Moraine East and approximately 6,300 acres in Warrior North
  • Initial $37 million capital commitment for 22 wells
  • Initial cash reimbursement of $20 million for 15 wells drilled and completed in 2015 once placed into sales
  • Option to participate in 36 additional wells for an incremental capital commitment of $138 million
  • Commenced free flow of gas from Moraine East

STATE COLLEGE, Pa., March 01, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Rex Energy Corporation (Nasdaq:REXX) (“Rex Energy” or the “company”) announced a new $175 million joint exploration and development agreement in the Moraine East and Warrior North Operated Areas.

Joint Exploration and Development Agreement

Rex Energy has entered into an agreement with an affiliate of Benefit Street Partners L.L.C. (“BSP”) to jointly develop 58 specifically designated wells in the company’s Moraine East and Warrior North operated areas. Under the agreement, BSP has committed to fund 15% of the first 16 wells in Moraine East, 12 of which have already been drilled and completed, and 65% of six wells in Warrior North, three of which have already been drilled and completed. BSP will also have the option to participate in the next 36 wells within the joint development area for a 65% working interest. In addition, BSP will earn a 15% - 20% assignment in Moraine East and Warrior North for all acreage within each unit they participate in.

The agreement with BSP allows Rex Energy to complete 15 additional wells in 2016, while lowering the company’s net operational capital guidance to a range of $30MM - $40MM. Total consideration for the transaction is expected to be $175 million, with $37 million committed at closing for the first 22 wells. Once the first 15 wells within the joint development area are flowing into sales, the company will receive reimbursement of approximately $20 million, as these wells were drilled and completed in 2015. After the initial commitment of 22 wells, the company will have approximately 30% of its Moraine East acreage held by production / held by operations (“HBP”). Upon completion of the 58 well program, the company will have HBP approximately 42,000 acres in Moraine East and approximately 10,400 acres in Warrior North.

“We are very excited to form this new relationship with Benefit Street Partners, which together allows us to further develop our Moraine East acreage while continuing to increase production and reserves from this strategic asset for Rex Energy,” said Tom Stabley, Rex Energy’s Chief Executive Officer. “This agreement also demonstrates the quality of both our Moraine East and Warrior North acreage despite a challenging commodity price environment.”

Tim Murray, Managing Director at BSP added “We are pleased to enter into this partnership with Rex Energy. Rex has been a premier operator in the Appalachia Basin for many years. We believe this partnership will be mutually beneficial to both firms as development progresses on Rex’s top tier acreage.”

SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc. acted as financial advisor to the company on this transaction.

Moraine East Area

In the Moraine East Area, the company has commenced the free flow of gas into the gathering and transportation system and expects to place all 12 of its initial Moraine East wells into sales over the next two weeks. Final commissioning of the system’s high pressure phase is expected in April 2016.

Tom Stabley, Rex Energy’s President and Chief Executive Officer commented, “We’re extremely pleased to have commissioned the gathering system for the Moraine East area. The timely completion of this project by our gathering provider, Stonehenge Appalachia, LLC, enables Rex to place the Moraine East wells into sales and demonstrate the full value of this strategic prospect. We thank Stonehenge and our midstream providers for a job well done and look forward to continued success in the area.”

About Rex Energy Corporation

Headquartered in State College, Pennsylvania, Rex Energy is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company operating in the Appalachian and Illinois Basins within the United States. The company’s strategy is to pursue its higher potential exploration drilling prospects while acquiring oil and natural gas properties complementary to its portfolio.

About Benefit Street Partners

Established in 2008, BSP and affiliates manage over $11 billion in assets under management across a broad range of credit strategies including middle market private debt, long-short liquid credit, opportunistic credit, long-only credit and commercial real estate debt. BSP utilizes fundamental credit analysis, proprietary sourcing, due diligence, sophisticated structuring and comprehensive risk management across all the credit strategies it manages. For further information, please visit http://www.provequity.com/credit.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of federal securities laws. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in this release that address activities, event, developments, forecasts, or guidance that Rex Energy expects, believes or anticipates will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements rely on a number of assumptions concerning future events and are subject to a number of uncertainties, factors and risks, many of which are outside Rex Energy's ability to control or predict, that could cause results to differ materially from management's current expectations. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, economic and market conditions, operational considerations, the timing and success of our exploration and development efforts, including those relating to the joint development agreement described in this release, and other uncertainties. Additional information concerning these and other factors can be found in our press releases and public periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2015, and we strongly encourage you to review those documents to understand these risks. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements because they reflect management's views only as of the date of this release. Neither we nor BSP undertake any obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements, or to make any other forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

For more information contact: Investor Relations (814) 278-7130 InvestorRelations@rexenergycorp.com

Source:Rex Energy Corporation