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US Oil and gas producer EQT to buy Rice Energy in $6.7bln deal



June 19 (Reuters) - U.S. oil and gas company EQT Corp said on Monday it would buy Rice Energy in a cash-and-stock deal worth $6.7 billion to expand its natural gas business.

Rice Energy shareholders will receive $5.30 per share in cash and 0.37 EQT shares for each share they hold, EQT said.

The offer translates to $27.05 per Rice Energy share, representing a premium of 37.4 percent to the stock's Friday closing price, according to Reuters calculations.

Rice Energy's shares surged nearly 26 percent to $24.90, while EQT's stock was down 7.3 percent in premarket trading on Monday.

EQT said the deal would give it access to Rice Energy's midstream assets, including a 92 percent interest in Rice Midstream GP Holdings. EQT will take on about $1.5 billion in debt, through the deal.

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Citigroup was EQT's financial adviser, while Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz were its legal advisers. Barclays Capital Inc was Rice Energy's financial adviser and Vinson & Elkins LLP its legal adviser.

(Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty) ((yashaswini.swamynathan@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780, outside U.S. +91 80 6749 2405; Reuters Messaging: yashaswini.swamynathan.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))
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