Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (Adnoc) is considering plans to acquire upstream oil and gas company Wintershall DEA, an affiliate of BASF SE, according to a Bloomberg report citing people with knowledge of the matter. A deal to acquire Wintershall DEA could be worth more than €10 billion, the report said. BASF and Adnoc declined to comment on the report.
BASF owns 72.7% of Wintershall DEA and investment company LetterOne has 27.3%. BASF has been exploring options to dispose of its Wintershall DEA stake, including a sale, for some time and it has taken a number of impairment charges against the stake over the past year. The €249 million net loss posted by BASF in the third quarter was driven mainly by losses at Wintershall DEA, the company said.
During BASF’s third-quarter earnings call with analysts, held on Oct. 31, CFO Dirk Elvermann said it was the company’s “strategic goal” to sell its stake in Wintershall DEA and that the company was working on “monetization options.”
Wintershall DEA is in the process of legally separating its Russia-related business and the separation is planned to be completed by mid-2024, Elvermann said. This would mark “an important milestone in the overall process,” he said.
In 2022, BASF received about €290 million as common dividend from Wintershall DEA, Elvermann said. “We do not expect any other dividend payments this year,” he said.
Wintershall DEA, meanwhile, has adjusted its corporate strategy to reflect “the changes in the energy sector and particularly its exit from Russia,” Elvermann said. The business is reorganizing its structure with a target of reducing administration costs by about €200 million on an annualized basis. The restructuring will result in about 500 job losses, he said.
The Bloomberg report said that other parties interested in acquiring Wintershall DEA include Harbour Energy PLC (London).
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