Apache targeted for takeover

US-based independent Apache has rejected a recent takeover bid, said to be worth US$18 billion, according to Bloomberg. But the company is now working with Goldman Sachs on a defense strategy.

On 9 November, analyst firm Simmons & Co. speculated in its morning note that the most likely buyers for Apache could be supermajors ExxonMobil and BP.

“While some might be surprised regarding BP, keep in mind that (Apache) bought a large amount of assets from BP in the Permian, Canada and Egypt following Macondo. In addition, BP still currently holds a large position in Egypt,” said Pearce Hammond of Simmons & Co.

Apache began selling off its offshore assets last year in an attempt to re-focus its strategy on US shale sector. And Apache recently sold its entire Australian business for $2.1 billion in April. However, Apache still owns assets in the UK North Sea, particularly one of the oldest producing fields, the Forties complex, which celebrated 40 years this month. (See OE’s profile of the Forties field from the September 2015 issue.)

Last week, Apache reported a net loss of $5.7 billion for Q3 2015, and a debt of $8.8 billion as of 30 September. The company said it has reduced its Q3 capital expenditures by 16% from the previous quarter.

"2015 has been a year of tremendous change and progress for Apache," John J. Christmann, president and CEO, Apache, said in the company’s Q3 results statement. "In addition to significantly improving our operational efficiencies, we have established a portfolio of leading positions in areas where we have best-in-class operating capabilities and a financial foundation that provides the strength and flexibility to take full advantage of a potentially lower-for-longer commodity cycle.” 

Image: Forties Alpha and the FASP facility. Photo from Apache.

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