Last year, energy-related private equity deal flow and fundraising increased as investment banks sought to raise funds and commit capital to the industry. The trend may continue this year, Buchanan Energy Co-Chair Sean W. Moran told Merger Market in the magazine's 2012 "Deal Drivers Americas" review.

Moran explained that onshore shales could see deal activity this year as "the highest quality acreage has already been snapped up and a number of companies will be looking for liquidity," either in joint ventures or sales.

Over the last two years, Buchanan's energy practice – one of the largest and most established in the region – has represented clients in Marcellus and Utica-related transactions with an aggregate value of $15 billion.