Apache said to seek up to $840million for Alberta energy assets

Qedi wins Apache commissioning contract
Qedi wins Apache commissioning contract

Apache Corp., the oil producer under investor pressure to shed its international assets, is seeking to raise as much as $840million from the sale of oil and gas projects in Alberta, two people with knowledge of the matter said.

Apache is working with Bank of Nova Scotia to sell the assets in the Provost region, according to marketing materials posted on the investment bank’s website. The projects produce the equivalent of almost 10,000 barrels of oil and natural gas, and have an annualised net operating income of $119 million, the document shows.

Apache, with a market value of more than $37billion, expects to raise $600 million to $840 million from the sale, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private information. The sale is a small part of a broader restructuring under way at the Houston-based oil and gas producer, which is being pushed by activist investor Jana Partners LLC to focus on more lucrative U.S. oil projects.

Based on their production, Apache could expect the assets to fetch $400 million to $500 million before factoring in the additional value of pipelines, infrastructure and real estate attached to the projects, said Sameer Uplenchwar, a Calgary- based analyst with Global Hunter Securities LLC. With those additions, Apache may hit its target, he said.

“Apache is in this mode of trying to clean house and getting rid of anything where they don’t believe any capital will be spent over the next 24 months,” Uplenchwar said in a telephone interview.

Bids are expected by mid-October, the marketing material states.

The properties might attract bids from companies like Whitecap Resources Inc. or Surge Energy Inc. that may see more value in the yields they produce than Apache’s current shareholders, Uplenchwar said.

Representatives for the companies didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Apache has already agreed to sell two costly gas export projects, including one under construction in Australia and a proposed facility in Kitimat, British Columbia, according to a July statement.

In addition, Apache is evaluating its international holdings and exploring multiple opportunities, including potentially spinning off those assets.