The biggest member of Big Oil, ExxonMobil
Its primary addition in the shale area has involved the pending acquisition of Fort Worth's XTO Energy
Kosmos is largely a creature of the financial world, with a slug of its funding coming from U.S. private equity firms, including The Blackstone Group
The sale would have given Exxon a 23.5% interest in the field. Almost immediately, however, the deal ran into headwinds from the Ghana government, which trotted out a number of possible buyers, including China's largest offshore operator, CNOOC
Part of the attraction of Jubilee lies in its potential position at the east end of a structure that may extend as much as 700 miles to the west, where a group that included Anadarko Petroleum
Last week, the powers that be in Ghana sent a letter to Exxon that, according to The Wall Street Journal, indicated that the government "is unable to support an ExxonMobil acquisition of Kosmos's Ghana Assets." The letter went on to state that it is the intent of the state oil company, Ghana National Petroleum, to acquire Kosmos's assets in Jubilee "at a fair market value."
So it appears that ExxonMobil is being blocked from a purchase it has sought earnestly. While I'd suggest that Fools continue to watch this unfolding saga, I'd also urge them to consider Exxon an awfully attractive addition to their investment future.
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Fool contributor David Lee Smith doesn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned above. He does welcome your questions or comments. CNOOC is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick. Chesapeake Energy is an Inside Value pick, and the Fool owns shares of both it and XTO. The Fool has a disclosure policy.