Cantera Energy Forms with $100M in Backing

Cantera Energy, an independent oil and natural gas company, has launched with $100 million investment from Kayne Anderson Energy Funds and management. Kayne is investing out of its Kayne Anderson Energy Fund VI. Based in The Woodlands, Texas, Cantera will focus on acquiring and developing oil and natural gas properties in the Gulf Coast region.

John Kelly and Nico Garza announced today that they have formed Cantera Energy, LLC (“Cantera”), an independent oil and natural gas company headquartered in The Woodlands, Texas. Cantera will focus on the acquisition and development of oil and natural gas properties with identifiable exploitation and development upside in the onshore Gulf Coast regions. Cantera is an investment portfolio company of Kayne Anderson Energy Funds (“Kayne Anderson”), with an initial equity commitment from Kayne Anderson Energy Fund VI and management of $100 million.

Prior to forming Cantera, Mr. Kelly and Mr. Garza worked together at El Paso Exploration and Production (“El Paso”), where Mr. Kelly served as Vice President of the Southern Division and Mr. Garza served as Director of El Paso’s Haynesville Shale position. The management team has a combined 36 years of upstream experience with an emphasis on technical evaluation and operational execution.

Mr. Kelly graduated from Louisiana State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Petroleum Engineering. Mr. Garza graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor’s degree in Petroleum Engineering.

“We are very fortunate to be partnering with John and Nico as they enter the next stage of their highly accomplished careers. In our view, the current market presents an ideal opportunity to partner with Cantera to pursue acquisitions as sellers continue to divest non-core assets to fund the development of capital intensive resource plays,” stated David Iverson, Managing Director at Kayne Anderson. John Kelly, Chairman and President of Cantera, had this to say about the partnership: “Nico and I are extremely excited to be launching our new venture with the support and confidence of Kayne Anderson. The entire Kayne Anderson Team is well respected in the industry and has proven their commitment to realizing the full value of all their portfolio companies. We look forward to building an enterprise that combines technical and operational excellence, significantly enhancing the overall value of our assets.”

About Kayne Anderson Energy Funds

Established in 1998, Kayne Anderson Energy Funds manage $3.8 billion of committed capital for energy private equity investments. With offices in Houston, Texas and Los Angeles, California, Kayne Anderson Energy Funds invest private capital primarily in high-growth oil and gas companies. For more information, please visit, or contact either David Iverson, Managing Director, at (713) 493-2010 or Greg Davis, Senior Vice President, at (713) 493-2017.