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Shell Sells Stake in North Sea Assets to Chrysaor for $3.8B

Anglo Dutch oil giant Royal Dutch Shell plcRDS.A recently inked a deal to sell a large chunk of its North Sea assets to smaller rival Chrysaor Holdings Ltd. for $3.8 billion. The deal is subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to be completed in the second half of 2017.

Details of the Deal

Chrysaor - a private equity-backed oil explorer - will make an initial consideration of $3 billion. It would then make a payment of up to $600 million subject to oil prices between the years 2018-2021. Further, payments of $180 million will be made for potential discoveries.

The assets to be sold include Shell's interest in Buzzard, which is a relatively new field to the north of Aberdeen, along with 10% stake in BP-operated Schiehallion. Other fields include Beryl, Bressay, Elgin-Franklin, J-Block, the Greater Armada cluster, Everest, Lomond and Erskine. These assets represent production of 115,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Motive of the Deal

The deal takes the $30 billion divestment program of Shell another step forward as it forges ahead with its upstream divestments. The company had also offloaded its stake in Gulf of Mexico, Canada and Thailand recently. The agreement further provides Shell a major uplift in its drive to decrease the debt following the acquisition of BG Group for $47 billion. The move is also in sync with the company's aim to upgrade and streamline its portfolio.

The assets sold account for nearly half of Shell's production in the North Sea and will resuscitate the ageing North Sea where production has been declining since the late 1990s. Thus many oil majors have faced troubles in generating profits. This is why the oil majors have been decreasing their footprint in the expensive North Sea in favor of reduced production cost elsewhere. London-based BP plc. BP had divested 25% of its stake in Magnus Field to Enquest Plc ENQUF in the previous month.

Zacks Rank and Key Pick

Headquartered in Netherlands, Shell is one of the largest integrated energy company and is engaged in production, refining, distribution and marketing of oil and natural gas. The company carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

The company outperformed the Zacks categorized industry over the prior six months. During the aforesaid period, shares of Shell rose almost 10% while the broader industry gained around 8%.

The company outperformed the Zacks categorized Oil & Gas-International integrated industry over the prior six months. During the aforesaid period, shares of Shell rose almost 10% while the broader industry gained around 8%.

A top-ranked player in this industry is Braskem S.A BAK which currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). In the preceding four quarters, Braskem reported an average positive earnings surprise of 105.5%. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

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BP p.l.c. (BP): Free Stock Analysis Report

Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDS.A): Free Stock Analysis Report

Braskem S.A. (BAK): Free Stock Analysis Report

ENQUEST PLC LON (ENQUF): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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