The billionaire owner of the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys also controls 75% of Comstock, whose shares have surged 85% this year. Lately, investors heard “that Jones still has plenty of dry powder earmarked” for the company, New York-based investment bank Seaport Global Securities LLC said in a note to clients.
At a recent “non-deal road show,” Comstock management said Jones isn’t “afraid to inject another $1.1 billion into the company when the opportunity presents itself,” Seaport analyst Mike Kelly wrote. That would match the $1.1 billion that Jones has already put into Comstock over the past 1.5 years, Seaport said, and his continued presence is a major positive for the driller at a time when many oil and gas companies’ find it tough to access the capital markets.
One answer to that dearth of capital in the oil patch has been the joint venture announced earlier this week between billionaire Sam Zell and Tom Barrack Jr.’s Colony Capital Inc., which will let investors skirt management teams and directly own crude and natural gas assets.
So-called DrillCos, which use third-party capital to help exploration and production companies fund their capital spending programs, could emerge in the current environment, but that structure is more of a “vehicle of last resort,” according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Vincent Piazza.