IPIC acquires Total SA's 48.83% stake in CEPSA

Total SA sold its entire 48.83% interest in Compania Espanola de Petroleos SA (CEPSA) to Abu Dhabi's sovereign fund International Petroleum Investment Co. (IPIC) for €3.7 billion.

“The transaction allows the Group to further reduce its exposure to European refining,” said Total SA, which has cut its European refining capacity by 550,000 b/d day since early 2007.

Total remains active in Spain, expanding its lubricant, specialty product, and chemical operations. IPIC and Total also plan to expand their partnership, especially in exploration and production.

CEPSA is Spain’s second-ranked oil company, with a refining capacity of 528,000 b/d, a retail network of around 1,750 service stations in Spain and Portugal, and oil and gas production of 55,000 boe/d.

IPIC held a 47.06% interest in CEPSA before it launched its takeover bid, first buying a 9.5% stake in CEPSA in 1988, and then boosting the stake to about 47.1% in 2009 in a €3.31 billion transaction.

According to one industry observer, this week’s deal with Total consolidates the presence of IPIC in the Iberian market and in Europe, and also opens the doors to Latin America, where Cepsa already has modest activities, notably in Colombia, Peru, Panama and Brazil.

Contact Eric Watkins at hippalus@yahoo.com


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