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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Gazprom Caught in Eyeing Repsol

Photo: ReutersNov. 13, 2008 - Kommersant - Russia gas monopoly Gazprom, which presence in Spain could have hardly been noticed so far, is willing to acquire 20 percent in Repsol from Sacyr Vallehermoso. The experts are optimistic about the deal prospects, specifying, however, that the monopoly will probably have to pay above the market price of €3.2 billion. For its part, Russia may admit Repsol to the project for Yuzhno-Tambey field development. It was Russia’s Vice Premier Alexander Zhukov that gave the first official confirmation to Gazprom’s intention to acquire 20 percent in Repsol. Zhukov made the respective statement at the news conference held by results of the meeting of Russia-Spain’s intergovernmental commission. Spanish Sacyr Vallehermoso put up the stake for sale September 12. Gazprom that had refuted the buying intention in October declined to comment on Zhukov’s words Wednesday. In addition to Gazprom, Spanish media named Shell, Total and LUKOIL as potential buyers. Repsol YPF is one of ten biggest private oil companies in the world and Latin America’s biggest energy company in terms of the asset size. It controls 57 percent of oil and gas processing facilities in Spain, selling 55 million tons of oil and 32 billion cu meters of gas each year. 2007 net profit reached €3.2 billion, the revenues stood at €55.9 billion. The major holders are Sacyr Vallehermoso S.A. (20.01 percent), Criteria Caixa Corp. (14.29 percent), Petroleos Mexicanos (4.90 percent), Chase Nominees Ltd (9.83 percent), Axa S.A. (4.21 percent). Sacyr Vallehermoso paid €6.5 billion for the stake in Repsol a few years ago but it cost no more than €3.2 billion on Madrid Exchange yesterday. Nevertheless, the price could be roughly €5 billion given the consolidation margin, forecasted Maxim Shein from BrokerCreditService. What’s more, according to Zhukov, Repsol proceeds with negotiations to set up a venture with Tambeineftegaz to implement the LNG projects. The firms of Metalloinvest owner Alisher Usmanov control 75 percent in the company and Gazprombank has the remaining 25 percent.

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