Blackstone buys shale drill bit firm that grew through downturn

By Luke Geiver | October 23, 2018

Blackstone Energy Partners has announced that it has entered into binding agreements to acquire a controlling, majority interest in Ulterra Drilling Technologies from affiliates of American Securities LLC. American Securities and certain members of management will retain a minority equity interest in the company going forward. Financial terms were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close prior to year-end 2018.

Ulterra is the largest pure-play, independent supplier of polycrystalline diamond compact drill bits to the oil and gas industry. The company is one of the fastest growing PDC drill bit manufacturers, having more than doubled total revenue since 2016. Ulterra currently has a leading position in many of the most active U.S. onshore oil and gas basins, including the Permian and Eagle Ford, and has a growing presence internationally. Ulterra’s singular focus on PDC drilling technology allows it to deliver the highest level of customer service and customization to producers across a wide range of basins and geological formations, driving industry leading performance and durability.

“Drill bits are a mission-critical downhole consumable product, which are poised to benefit from drilling activity, particularly in the most economic oil and gas plays in North America. Ulterra is well-positioned to serve producers in these plays given its portfolio of premium PDC drill bits that deliver best-in-class performance and reliability. We look forward to partnering with American Securities and the Ulterra team as the company enters this next phase of growth. We believe that high-quality equipment manufacturers such as Ulterra will continue to represent attractive investment opportunities, including potential add-on acquisitions for Ulterra, or new standalone opportunities in oil field services and equipment,” said Eric Liaw, Senior Managing Director of Blackstone Energy Partners.

For more on Ulterra's story of growth through the downturn, click here