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Devon to divest up to $5B in noncore assets to streamline portfolio

The Oklahoma-based oil and gas producer Devon Energy Corp. plans to divest up to $5 billion of its noncore assets over the next few years in an effort to simplify its portfolio.

The strategic asset sales, to be carried out "on a significant scale," would streamline Devon's operations to just the SCOOP/STACK, Permian and Rocky Mountain shale plays, said David Hager, president, CEO and director of Devon, during the Scotia Howard Weil energy conference in New Orleans.

Devon's assets in the Delaware and the STACK play, in particular, are shifting to full-field development and the company expects to prioritize capital allocation into funding its operational plants in these areas, according to a Feb. 21 earnings call. "With our Delaware Basin and STACK assets rapidly building momentum and operating scale, we are committed to simplifying our asset portfolio by selling less competitive assets," Hager said during the call.

The divestitures are also expected to help Devon boost shareholder returns through dividend increases and share buybacks, according to Hager.