Z Energy to buy Chevron’s New Zealand network

Z Energy is poised to buy Chevron’s New Zealand service station network for about $NZ800 million.

The deal includes a $NZ150 million capital raising with the help of Goldman Sachs.

Chevron’s network includes 147 Caltex-branded service stations and another 73 Caltex diesel fuel filling stops for trucks.

Since Chevron sold its 50 % stake in ASX-listed Caltex Australia it has been seen as a seller of assets in Australia and New Zealand. Last week it sold its 11 % share of The New Zealand Refining Company.

Street Talk reported last week that Z Energy was a logical buyer of the Chevron assets if they were put up for sale.

The oil giant is part-way through a $US15 billion (US$19 billion) asset sell-off, driven by its Californian head office and expected to continue through to the end of 2017.

Exxon Mobil’s Mobil has about 190 service stations in New Zealand, while BP has about 210. The Chevron exit may spur Mobil and BP to also consider sales.

Z Energy, along with international majors Chevron, BP and Exxon Mobil dominate the market.

The dual-listed Z Energy has indicated it would be interested in acquiring more service stations if they came to market, while fund managers say there is significant upside on offer from a service station mop-up.

Its shares were placed in a trading halt on Monday morning. – Financial Review

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