Petroplus to Sell its Investment in PBF

abarrelfullabarrelfull wrote on 28 Sep 2010 09:22
Tags: downstream investment pbf petroplus refinery

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Petroplus Holdings AG (SIX: PPHN) today announced that it has reached an agreement in principle with the Blackstone Group and First Reserve, its partners in PBF Energy Company LLC, for the sale of Petroplus’ 32.62% share of the company.

The sale price is $91 million, and will result in a small gain on Petroplus’ investments in PBF to date. The transaction is subject to the execution of a definitive agreement, which is expected in the coming days. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year.

Thomas D. O’Malley, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Petroplus, said, “I believe the
decision to exit PBF is in the best interest of Petroplus’ shareholders. Opportunities for improvement and expansion of the Petroplus European refining system are both real and exciting from my perspective.

These opportunities will create more long-term shareholder value, and as Petroplus’ largest individual shareholder, I am glad to see the company maintain its focus on this key mission.”
Commenting on the transaction, Jean-Paul Vettier, Petroplus’ Chief Executive Officer, said, “This transaction represents an important strategic shift for Petroplus, which our shareholders should clearly understand.

There are three primary reasons for this decision:

  • First, management believes it is most important to focus the company’s resources on our core European operations, and pursue strategies to improve the competitiveness of our existing asset base. This transaction improves our flexibility and liquidity in a way that will help us achieve this goal.
  • Second, we have recently seen attractive opportunities emerge for growth in Europe. While I cannot be certain of success, I believe that Petroplus will be better positioned to acquire more attractive assets by concentrating on European opportunities.
  • Third, PBF expects to expand at a rapid rate in the United States. This would require large

investments by Petroplus to maintain our position as the largest owner within the partnership. In view of the difficult financial environment, the Board decided that raising further capital to support such an expansion would not be in the best interest of shareholders. If Petroplus remained as an owner, it would face the difficult choice of investing at a challenging moment or lowering its ownership interest to a level that would take all influence out of our hands.”

Petroplus to Sell its Investment in PBF

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