Case | HBS Case Collection | October 2009

A Big (Double) Deal: Anadarko's Acquisition of Kerr-McGee and Western Gas Resources

by Clayton M. Christensen and Curtis Rising


On June 23, 2006, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation announced that it was simultaneously acquiring two public companies, Kerr-McGee and Western Gas Resources, in all-cash deals. The total price was about $24 billion, a figure close to Anadarko's market cap at the time. The parallel deal flows and negotiations had been completed in a matter of months. The specific dynamics of this "deal" were extraordinary. Anadarko, Kerr-McGee and Western were all companies with rich and dynamic histories. The combination of resources, processes and people involved in these deals was complex and powerful. The announcement presented a real investor relations challenge for Anadarko. How would Anadarko explain the deals? How would the companies combine to build the most value? What would be divested to pay back the cash? What was the strategy behind these transformative deals? How was this pulled off so quickly and effectively?

Keywords: Acquisition; Business Model; Transformation; Negotiation; Organizational Culture; Public Ownership; Business and Shareholder Relations; Alignment; Valuation; Energy Industry; United States;


Christensen, Clayton M., and Curtis Rising. "A Big (Double) Deal: Anadarko's Acquisition of Kerr-McGee and Western Gas Resources." Harvard Business School Case 610-020, October 2009.