Petrobras is close to the sale of two offshore oil fields in a process that could reach about $ 1 billion and help Petrobras in its quest to reduce its debts.
A deadline up to June 5 was set by the oil company to receive final offers for its oil fields in Pampo and Enchova, off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, two sources familiar with the matter said, requesting anonymity to discuss confidential matters.
Independent oil company, Trident Energy, backed by private equity manager Warburg Pincus, leads the dispute, although Petrobras has invited other companies to submit their offers, including Rio de Janeiro-based PetroRio and a consortium EIG Global Energy Partners and Brazilian firm Ouro Petro Oil and Gas, sources said.
Petro Rio declined to comment. Petrobras, EIG and Trident did not respond to requests for comments.
Together, the Pampo and Enchova fields produce almost 39,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, according to data from July 2018, making them the largest mature production assets in Petrobras’ divestment portfolio.
The company’s chief executive, Roberto Castello Branco, who took office in January, is targeting the sale of dozens of assets in a quest to reduce debt and focus the company on deepwater production and exploration.
Earlier on Monday, the company began the process of selling 27 onshore oil fields in Espírito Santo.
The Pampo and Enchova fields are among the most challenging sales for Petrobras. In 2018, the oil company opened exclusive deals with the EIG consortium. In the meantime, under the rules established by the Federal Audit Court (TCU), Petrobras would have to execute a final process of reopening after the conclusion of the bilateral negotiations, allowing third parties to make new bids of any amounts, provided they had the same terms bilateral offer.
EIG took advantage of the round of new bids to reduce its bid, prompting Petrobras to withdraw from the deal, as reported by Reuters in January. The state company then opened exclusive deals with the Trident group.
The deadline up to June represents the second attempt to obtain a new final offer for the fields. The sources warned that a small delay is possible but not expected.
The new contract contains a so-called “earn-out” clause, whereby the buyer may have to pay up to $ 200 million more for Petrobras after the initial acquisition, depending on oil prices, sources said.