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Osaka Gas’ Acquisition of Sabine Oil & Gas Recognized as “Best Oil & Gas Acquisition – Upstream” by IJInvestor

Osaka Gas’ acquisition of Sabine Oil & Gas has been named the “Best Oil & Gas Acquisition – Upstream” as part of the 2020 IJInvestor Acquisition Awards. Vinson & Elkins is recognized as legal adviser to Osaka in the transaction.

According to a profile which ran in the Winter edition of IJGlobal, the transaction stood out to judges as the first time that a Japanese company has purchased a United States-based shale gas developer.

The acquisition, which closed in December 2019, enhanced the upstream operating capability of Osaka Gas, adding to its upstream business portfolio to build the natural gas value chain in the U.S.

“There have been many joint venture-type deals where foreign investors acquire nonoperating minority interests in oil and gas properties that continue to be operated by a US operator,” Shay Kuperman, lead V&E partner advising Osaka, told IJGlobal. “However, in the Osaka/Sabine deal, Osaka acquired all of the equity of Sabine and this is much less common. Therefore, we needed to consider significant amounts of additional issues in this type of transaction in comparison to a more typical joint venture-type of transaction, such as various employment, tax, financial, and shareholder-related matters.”

The V&E team advising Osaka was led by Kuperman, with assistance from partners John B. Connally, Sean Becker, Todd Way and Larry Nettles, counsel Brad Foxman and senior associate Megan James.

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