Occidental in talks with Indonesia’s Pertamina for $4.5b energy asset sale

PT Pertamina fuel trucks stand in line at the company's fuel depot in Jakarta. Photographer: Dimas Ardian/Bloomberg

Occidental Petroleum Corp. is in talks about a potential sale of energy assets in Africa and the Middle East to Indonesia’s state-owned PT Pertamina, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Pertamina is negotiating the acquisition of oil and gas stakes in countries including Ghana and the United Arab Emirates, according to the people. It has been discussing a purchase price of about $4.5 billion for the assets, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

The Indonesian company has also expressed interest in buying some assets from Occidental in Algeria and Oman, though they may not be included in an initial deal, the people said.

For Occidental, a deal would help it reduce the debt pile it built up from its $37 billion purchase of Anadarko Petroleum Corp. last year. A slump in energy demand worsened the Houston-based firm’s financial situation, forcing it in May to cut a quarterly dividend to the lowest level in decades.

Occidental has been reviewing options for its Middle Eastern assets as it seeks ways to cut its leverage, Bloomberg News reported in June. The company’s attempt to sell its Ghana and Algeria assets to Total SA fell apart earlier this year.

Shares of Occidental rose 1.5% to $16.59 at 10:58 a.m. in New York.

Declining Production

Other suitors have also expressed interest in the Occidental assets, according to the people. Pertamina hasn’t reached a final agreement, and details of the potential transaction could change, the people said.

A spokeswoman for Pertamina said she couldn’t immediately comment. Occidental spokeswoman Melissa Schoeb declined to comment.

Occidental has been producing in Oman for more than 30 years, according to its website. It has operations at the Safah Field and Block 62 in the north of the country and at the Mukhaizna Field in the south. Occidental also has a 40% stake in Abu Dhabi National Oil Co.’s Al Hosn project in the United Arab Emirates.

Indonesia, once a member of OPEC, has suffered decades of declining domestic production and has struggled to lure investment in recent years even as its domestic consumption soared. Pertamina produced about 414,000 barrels a day in the first half of the year, it said in a statement this week.

Bloomberg

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.