Calgary-based E&P Artis Exploration Ltd. closed a CDN$180 million (USD$138 million) growth equity investment from Warburg Pincus.

Founded in 2015, Artis is focused on the Duvernay East Shale Basin of Western Canada, where the company holds a contiguous acreage position of over 260,000 net acres.

Artis is led by Darryl Metcalfe, who was previously president and CEO at Artek Exploration.

“With this investment, we will be well-positioned to continue to scale through the development of our premier acreage position in the Duvernay oil play,” Metcalfe said.

Metcalfe is joined by a seasoned management team with extensive experience in the geotechnical and engineering aspects of resource and shale plays in North America.

2017 saw a record $453 billion from investors

In the context of the total business sector, the global private equity industry raised a record $453 billion from investors in 2017, leaving it with more than $1 trillion to pour into companies and new business ventures, Reuters reported at the beginning of the year. The capital raised in 2017 surpassed the previous landmark of $414 billion set in 2007.

Private equity players have been stepping up the pace of investments in the energy sector since the recovery took hold last year.

Warburg Pincus Invests $138 Million in Canadian E&P

2017 Top 10 Private Equity Sponsors. Source: PLS

In 2017 the industry was clawing its way out of a miserable two-and-one-half-year downturn during which IPOs and secondary public securities offerings were postponed or cancelled. And private equity was in position to take up the slack. Private equity funds are flush with cash.

Private Equity sponsors issued 125 commitments in 2017, and the upstream sector was tied to 70% of them.

Out of 125 PE commitments tracked by PLS in 2017, upstream accounted for 87 commitments, oilfield services had 17 and midstream had 19.  Private equity-backed companies were involved in 29% of all upstream M&A transactions in 2017.

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