Norwegian oil firm Statoil has entered into an agreement to acquire US-based Brigham Exploration for about $4.4bn.
Under the deal, the company will buy all of Brigham’s shares for $36.50 each in an all-cash tender offer.
The transaction will give Statoil more than 375,000 net acres in the Williston Basin in the US and Brigham also holds interests in 40,000 net acres in other areas.
According to Statoil, the Williston Basin offers the potential for oil production from the Bakken and Three Forks formations.
Brigham’s current equity production is approximately 21,000 barrels of oil equivalent (boe) per day and the acreage has potential to ramp up to 60,000-100,000 boe per day equity production over a five-year period.
Statoil president and CEO Helge Lund said the US unconventional plays hold a substantial resource base and represent an increasingly important part of future energy supplies.
"Entering the Bakken and Three Forks tight oil plays and taking on operatorship represents a new significant step for Statoil," Lund said.