According to a Bloomberg report, Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (NYSE:PBR) has chosen Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) to help sell its stakes as part of an earlier announced $13.7 billion divestment plan. Banco Santander, S.A. (ADR) (NYSE:SAN) is also roped in as an advisor for the stated stake sale. It is believed that Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) will advice on Petrobras for its intended stake sale in Petrobras Distribuidora SA (BR), which is a largest distributor and marketer of petroleum biofuels and derivatives in Latin America.
Part of the divestment plan
Citigroup Inc (NYSE:C) may recommend Petrobras to either sell the stake in BR directly or through a public offering. On the other hand, Banco Santander will take care of stake divestment in Petrobras’ natural gas unit, Transportadora Associada de Gas (TAG). Meanwhile, the company is also evaluating options to sell assets linked to transport unit Transpetro. Scandal-hit Petrobras is enveloped in a financial crisis and is constantly exploring ways to raise money. Recently, Brazilian Finance Minister Joaquim Levy has refused to back Petrobras’ local bond while the company has already been shut out of overseas credit markets.
Petrobras board member Silvio Sinedino was upset to learn that the company is going ahead with these sales. He said that it is not the best time to sell the assets. Sinedino explained that the sale may not fetch right value as buyers already know how badly Petrobras needs funds. Also, the existing market conditions, where dollar is up, and brent prices down does not make the decision look logical.
There are many more assets included in the targeted divestment list and are under review of the company. The rush to divest by Petroleo Brasileiro Petrobras SA (ADR) (NYSE:PBR) came after it failed to sell a stake in any of its units during the last four years. The management accepted the fact but argued that the company involved more expansion through acquisitions gained a little knowledge about selling.
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