UPDATE 2-Marathon Petroleum raises cash portion of MarkWest offer again
(Adds quotes, details from deal opponent)
Nov 17 (Reuters) - Marathon Petroleum Corp raised for the second time the cash portion of its offer for U.S. natural gas processor MarkWest Energy Partners LP by $210 million to $1.28 billion, nearly double what it had offered initially.
The two companies said on Tuesday Marathon would now offer $6.20 in cash and 1.09 units of its pipeline master limited partnership MPLX LP for each MarkWest unit.
However, the value of the total offer has fallen to $10.38 billion as of Monday from $15.6 billion when the deal was announced on July 13 as MPLX shares have dropped nearly 40 percent since then.
Marathon first raised the cash portion of its offer to $5.21 per unit on Nov. 10 from $3.37 in July, after MarkWest shareholder and former chief executive John Fox said the deal would lead to a 46 percent cut in cash distributions to unitholders.
In a call to investors and analysts later on Tuesday, Fox reiterated his opposition to what he called a "fundamentally bad deal."
"You can't make a bad deal a good one and then use your $6 to cover all the sins of omission here, I guess," he said. It's a drop in the bucket. It is dwarfed by the stock price decline."
The acquisition will create the fourth-largest master limited partnership, which is a limited partnership that is publicly traded on an exchange.
The total offer now translates to $51.74 per unit, a 14 percent premium to MarkWest's Monday close, but lower than $78.64 in July. Continued...