Premier Oil targets Eon’s North Sea assets for acquisition

Deal would be latest takeover linked to restructuring over slump

North Sea drilling: Premier is seeking to acquire Eon’s interests in an  oil and gas basin that is one of the most expensive places to pump crude in the world. Photograph: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

North Sea drilling: Premier is seeking to acquire Eon’s interests in an oil and gas basin that is one of the most expensive places to pump crude in the world. Photograph: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

 

Premier Oil is in talks to acquire the UK North Sea assets of German utility Eon.

Eon, which operates the Huntington field, has production interests in the Elgin, Franklin, Glenelg, West Franklin, Scoter and Merganser fields. It also operates the Babbage, Johnston, Hunter and Rita producing fields, and holds interests in the Caister, Minke and Ravenspurn North fields, as well as the ETS and CMS pipeline systems. It has exploration licences west of the Shetlands.

The any deal could be a “reverse takeover” as the purchase price may be close to Premier’s £100 million market value. It could mark the latest transaction in a wave of takeovers and asset sales as plunging oil prices spur restructuring.

Producers in the North Sea – ranging from companies such as Royal Dutch Shell and Total to smaller players such as EnQuest and Ithaca Energy – are contending with the most difficult conditions in living memory.

The ageing oil and gas basin is one of the most expensive places to pump crude in the world.

Eon made the decision to sell its North Sea business in November 2014. – (Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016)