It appears that BP (NYSE: BP) could soon join Petrobras (NYSE: PBR) and other successful operators in the deep and prolific waters off Brazil's coast.

While it's not yet a done deal, it appears that Devon Energy (NYSE: DVN) will sell a package of its assets in Brazil, the Gulf of Mexico, and Azerbaijan to BP for as much as $7 billion. Devon had announced last year that it would sell its international and Gulf of Mexico assets to concentrate its activities onshore in North America.

While BP operates throughout much of the world, it has yet to become involved in Brazil, which has been the locus of numerous major discoveries during the past several years. Of the 10 exploration blocks that BP would acquire in Brazil, seven are located in the Campos and Camamu-Almada basins, where, in addition to Petrobras, such companies as Repsol (NYSE: REP) have met with success. The package would also grant BP two onshore licenses in the Parnaiba basin.

In the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, BP will walk away with a high-grade portfolio of interests in 240 leases, many in the currently hot Paleogene play. But unlike Brazil, this area is hardly new to BP. The company already is the top producer there, with a capacity of 500,000 barrels a day. Last summer, it headed a group that drilled the world's deepest well at more than 35,000 feet. That effort led to the discovery of the giant Tiber field.

Also, in Azerbaijan, BP will acquire Devon's 5.6% interest in the ACG offshore oilfield located 60-plus miles into the Caspian Sea. That particular transaction will increase BP's interest in the project to nearly 40%

Finally, it appears that Devon will pay $500 million to BP for a half-interest in the latter's Kirby oil-sands interests in Alberta, Canada. Devon will operate the thus-far-undeveloped project, and will contribute $150 million in capital cost for its new partner. BP is currently upgrading its Whiting, Indiana refinery, to better process heavy Canadian crude.

Apparently, there are other bidders still technically in the running for the Devon assets, including Chevron (NYSE: CVX) and CNOOC (NYSE: CEO). Nevertheless, it appears that BP has a strong lead in the race. I frankly become more convinced almost by the day that BP is one solid company that it is capable of doing wonders for Foolish portfolios.  

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Fool contributor David Lee Smith doesn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. CNOOC is a Motley Fool Global Gains recommendation. Petroleo Brasileiro is a Motley Fool Income Investor pick. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days. He does welcome your questions or comments. The Fool has a priceless disclosure policy.