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Maersk Oil to acquire Brazil’s SK do Brasil Ltda for $2.4 billion

A.P. Møller-Mærsk’s wholly owned subsidiary Maersk Oil has agreed with SK Energy Co. Ltd to acquire SK do Brasil Ltda. for $2.4 billion on a cash and debt-free basis. The acquisition is subject to customary conditions, including governmental approval and will not affect the 2010 financial result of A. P. Møller – Mærsk A/S, read the firm’s press release.

The acquisition gives Maersk Oil access to sizeable pre-salt assets offshore Brazil, one of the most prolific regions in the world for oil exploration and production. It offers immediate production and significant growth potential as discoveries identified in the acreage are appraised. In addition, the acquisition offers a strong upside from blocks lying in the Campos Basin as exploration prospects are tested.

A.P. Moller – Maersk Group CEO Nils S. Andersen said the A.P. Moller - Maersk Group has the stated ambition to grow Maersk Oil. This investment will contribute significantly to replacing Maersk Oil's reserves in the long-term as it now expands Maersk Oil's position in one of the world's most attractive regions for the exploration and production industry, he said.

Maersk Oil CEO Jakob Thomasen noted that the acquisition is consistent with the firm’s strategy as it will transform Brazil into a core producing country for Maersk Oil. Through its partnerships in the three blocks it is to acquire, Maersk Oil will strengthen its position in deepwater exploration and production, an area where it has acquired acreage and built strong competencies in recent years, said Thomasen.

The acquisition comprises three blocks – BM-C-008 which includes the Polvo Field (40 per cent share, Devon operated), BM-C-030 which includes the Wahoo discovery (20 per cent share, Anadarko operated) and BM-C-032 which includes the Itaipu discovery (27 per cent share, Devon operated). British Petroleum has bought Devon’s Brazilian activities and will upon regulatory approval become operator of these.

The Polvo Field offers a current net production of approx. 10,000 barrels of oil a day (SK do Brasil Ltda. share). The Wahoo and Itaipu discoveries will be appraised in 2011 and first oil may be possible by 2016 and 2018, respectively. Additional exploration prospectively has been observed in both these blocks, some of which is planned to be tested in 2013, said the firm in the release.

The A.P. Moller - Maersk Group is a worldwide conglomerate. It operates in some 130 countries and has a workforce of some 115,000 employees.

23 Dec 2010.