Total takes $2.25bn stake in US shale

The joint venture agreed by Total and Chesapeake in December could lead to further North American shale deals and signals Total’s desire to develop its unconventional resources worldwide.

Total E&P USA signed a joint venture agreement on December 30 with US-based Chesapeake Exploration to acquire a 25% share in the latter’s shale gas portfolio for $800 million. Over the next six years, Total has also committed to pay a maximum of $1.45 billion in the form of a 60% carry of Chesapeake future capital expenditures on drilling and completion of wells within the framework of the joint venture.

The assets include approximately 300,000 net acres of leasehold, 90% of which are located in

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