El Paso, Kinder Morgan Near $7 Billion Sale of Assets (EP, KMI, APO)

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The $21 billion merger between El Paso Corp. (NYSE: EP) and Kinder Morgan Inc. (NYSE: KMI) likely depends on whether or not the proposed combination can shed some assets. Such a deal now appears close at hand, following reports that Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE: APO) is leading a group of buyers who are preparing to make a $7 billion offer the exploration & production assets of El Paso.

El Paso originally intended to spin-off the assets, but following the proposed acquisition by Kinder Morgan, the companies decided to try to sell the assets if a buyer could be found. Apollo was mentioned last month as a likely suspect.

According to a report at Bloomberg News, Apollo will finance the acquisition with $5.5 billion debt financing, $3.5 billion in bonds and a $2 billion loan.