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Statoil touted as potential bidder for Xcite’s Bentley field

Statoil's head office in Stavanger
Statoil's head office in Stavanger

Norwegian oil and gas giant Statoil has been touted as a potential bidder for troubled Xcite Energy’s Bentley field in the North Sea.

Rob West, partner, oil and energy research at Redburn, said yesterday that Statoil’s previous interest in Bentley marked it out as a candidate for the asset.

Mr West said: “Statoil previously considered developing the stalled Bressay heavy-oilfield in conjunction with Bentley, so could be a bidder for the asset at distressed prices.”

A Statoil spokeswoman said the company did not comment on market speculation.

Xcite, which owns 100% of the North Sea Bentley field, is facing liquidation after bondholders rejected a debt for equity swap.

The company had been seeking out partners to help fund the field for months amid an industry-wide slowdown in project financing.

Bentley, discovered in 1977, is estimated to be capable of producing nearly 300million barrels of oil over 35 years.

The undeveloped field is located about 100 miles east of Shetland.

It is near Bressay, which Statoil decided to put on the back burner due to the crude price slump.

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