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Noble Energy gains permission to negotiate potential buy out with CONSOL parties

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Noble Energy gains permission to negotiate potential buy out with CONSOL parties

Noble Energy Inc. has gained permission to discuss and negotiate a potential sale of its 50% stake in CONE Gathering LLC or interest in CONE Midstream Partners LP to CNX Gas Company LLC and its affiliates, known collectively as the CONSOL Energy Inc. parties.

The Allegheny County, Pa., Court of Common Pleas recently ruled that the CONSOL parties had the right of first refusal and therefore must be given the opportunity to buy the 50% ownership stake in their joint venture Marcellus Shale midstream operator that Noble had originally agreed to divest to Quantum Energy Ltd.

Noble cannot close its deal with Quantum until CONSOL has been allowed to decide whether it wants to purchase the stake, according to the document, which adds that CONSOL witnesses stated the private equity firm was "an unwanted partner."

On Dec. 7, Noble came into an agreement with Quantum Energy portfolio company Wheeling Creek Midstream LLC under which both parties may terminate the purchase agreement if the deal is not consummated by an "outside date" of June 30, 2018.