Lojas Americanas 'evaluating' BR Distribuidora acquisition

Friday, October 14, 2016

Retail chain Lojas Americanas has expressed interest in acquiring a stake in the fuel distribution unit of Brazilian state-run oil company Petrobras.

BR Distribuidora, as the unit is known, is Brazil's largest fuel distributor with a network of more than 7,000 service stations.

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"The company has shown interest in participating in the acquisition process and is evaluating this business opportunity, [but] nothing has been defined in regards to the presentation of any future proposal," Lojas Americanas said in a statement.

Petrobras' board approved a competitive bidding process for BR Distribuidora in July. Under terms of the sale, the buyer will assume a maximum 51% stake in the company and share its control with the Rio de Janeiro-based energy giant.

Earlier this month Petrobras said it had sent an investment teaser to several companies that were shortlisted with the help of an unnamed consultant.

Petrobras has raised about two thirds of the US$15.1bn it plans to receive from divestments in 2015 and 2016.

The biggest deal so far has been the US$5.19bn sale of a 90% stake in the Nova Transportadora do Sudeste gas pipeline unit to a consortium led by Brookfield Asset Management.

Petrobras has also offloaded oil and gas fields, refineries and other distribution assets as it seeks to ease the industry's largest debt load and overcome a crippling corruption scandal.

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