Maersk Oil sold to Total for $7.45bn

A.P. Møller – Mærsk has found a buyer for its oil division. French energy giant Total has swooped for Maersk Oil & Gas in a $7.45bn share and debt transaction.

Under the agreed terms, A.P. Møller – Maersk will receive a consideration of $4.95bn in Total shares and Total will assume $2.5bn of Maersk Oil’s debt. Total has also offered the possibility of a seat on its board of directors to A.P. Møller Holding,the main shareholder of A.P. Møller – Mærsk.

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018.

“The combination with Maersk Oil offers Total an exceptional overlap of upstream businesses globally which will enhance Total’s competitiveness and value in many core areas, in particular through some high quality growing assets and through the delivery of synergies,” Total said in a release today.

Commenting on the transaction, Patrick Pouyanne, Total’s chairman and CEO said, “This transaction delivers an exceptional opportunity for Total to acquire, via an equity transaction, a company with high quality assets which are an excellent fit with many of Total’s core regions. The combination of Maersk Oil’s North Western Europe businesses with our existing portfolio will position Total as the second operator in the North Sea with strong production profiles in UK, Norway and Denmark, thus increasing exposure to conventional assets in OECD countries. Internationally, in the US Gulf of Mexico, Algeria, East Africa, Kazakhstan and Angola there is an excellent fit between Total and Maersk Oil’s businesses allowing for value accretion through commercial, operating and financial synergies.”

The deal will see Total become a 3m barrels a day major by 2019.

For A.P. Møller – Maersk the sale is a huge relief, having hawked the division around the world for many months. The Danish conglomerate announced plans to split in two last year, with energy becoming a separate business to its core transport and logistics focus.

“In determining the best future ownership structure for Maersk Oil, it has been imperative for us that the capabilities and assets created in Maersk Oil continue to be developed, and that long-term investments are upheld, especially in the Danish part of the North Sea,” Søren Skou, CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk, said today.

Claus Hemmingsen, vice CEO of A.P. Moller – Maersk and CEO of the energy division, added: “By selling to Total, we ensure a continued Danish stronghold in the North Sea based on Maersk Oil’s leading position within technology development and its track record as a lean, efficient and trusted partner.”

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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