Petronas pitches $1b offshore gas project stake to Shell, ExxonMobil, PTTEP, others

Visual from Petronas website. October 2015

Malaysia’s Petronas has pitched an estimated $1 billion stake in a prized upstream local gas project to potential bidders including Royal Dutch Shell, ExxonMobil Corp, Thailand’s PTT Exploration and Production and Japanese firms, sources familiar with the matter said.

If successful, the deal could mark the Malaysian company’s biggest upstream stake sale since oil prices started declining more than two years ago. Petronas is targeting lowering operating expenses, job cuts and project rollbacks to help it navigate through the low oil price environment.

The state-owned oil and gas company has approached about a dozen prospective buyers including global oil majors and Asian firms focused on Southeast Asia, said the sources, who declined to be identified as the talks are private.

They said Petronas has begun providing financial and operational data to the companies and expects to receive bids over the next few weeks.

Citing sources, Reuters reported in February that the Malaysian state-owned co was considering selling a stake of as much as 49 percent in the SK316 offshore gas block in Malaysia’s Sarawak state.

In a statement to Reuters, the Malaysian The state-owned oil and gas company said that through its subsidiary, Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd, it is looking for partners who can bring the technology and capabilities to explore, develop and efficiently operate the various fields and opportunities in the SK316 offshore gas block.

“We are confident that we will attract the right partners to maximize the potential value of these opportunities to help meet the world’s growing oil and gas demand,” Petronas said.

It was not immediately known what the individual companies’ response to Petronas’ approach was.

ExxonMobil declined to comment, while Shell referred the query to Petronas. A spokeswoman for PTTEP declined to comment on the deal but said the company was keen to invest in Southeast Asia because it had expertise in the region where costs and risks were low.

Also Read: Malaysia’s Petronas may consider Shell site for Canadian LNG project

Reuters

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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.