July 15, 2024

DealBook: Statoil to Sell Pipeline Stake for $3.2 Billion

Statoil, the Norwegian oil and natural gas giant, said on Monday that it would sell a 24.1 percent stake in the joint pipeline venture Gassled for 17.35 billion Norwegian kroner ($3.2 billion).

The deal is part of “further streamlining of Statoil’s portfolio,” Eldar Sætre, an executive at Statoil, said in a company statement.

Statoil, in which Norway holds a 67 percent stake, is keeping 5 percent of the venture, but selling the bulk to Solveig Gas Norway, a holding company owned by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, a subsidiary of the German insurer Allianz and an arm of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.

The “divestment in Gassled enables a redeployment of capital into assets and projects that yield higher rates of return,” Statoil said, without going into details.

The company has plans to invest $16 billion this year in Norway and abroad, but would not go into details about how it expected the cash from the Gassled sale to be deployed.

In March, Statoil said it planned to invest $3 billion in exploration activity this year, citing operations in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coasts of Brazil, Tanzania, Indonesia and Norway.

Gassled processes natural gas from the Norwegian continental shelf and pipes it to countries on the European continent and Great Britain.

Last year, the joint venture delivered about 90 billion cubic meters of natural gas, a spokesman said, coming to about 19 percent of the 470 billion cubic meters that Europe consumed in 2010.

The transaction still needs the approval of Norwegian regulators, but Statoil declined to say when it expected a decision.

Morgan Stanley advised Statoil on the deal.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=556941b7c29782cfaee6d53fbaf93cd1

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