Angela Macdonald-Smith, Bloomberg
Sydney: Global oil and gas mergers and acquisitions rose 16% last year, driven by North American transactions, said PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC, the world’s largest accounting firm.
The value of transactions rose to $291.1 billion (Rs12,34,264 crore) in 2006, of which 56% was in North America and 16% in Europe, the firm said in a report released today in Adelaide, Australia. Australian transactions rose 36% to $1.5 billion, from $1.1 billion, while deals in the Asia-Pacific region fell 17% to $16.2 billion.
Kinder Morgan Inc.’s buyout led by Chairman Richard Kinder was the largest transaction last year, valued at $32.4 billion, followed by Statoil ASA’s purchase of Norsk Hydro ASA’s energy unit at $32.2 billion, PricewaterhouseCoopers said. In Asia, the largest deal was the $5 billion move by China National Offshore Oil Corp. to develop Iran’s North Pars gas field and build liquefied natural gas plants, it said.
“In the period ahead, we are likely to see continued momentum in oil and gas deal activity,” PricewaterhouseCoopers said. “It is clear that consolidation has a long way to run in the independent and mid-size sector of the market, particularly in North America.”
The resurgence of national oil companies in India and China as well as private equity interest in the industry is helping drive transactions, Brian Johnson, executive director of the firm, said in a statement accompanying the release of the report, which was handed out at the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association’s annual conference in Adelaide, South Australia.