Italian energy firm Eni has agreed to merge its Norwegian subsidiary Eni Norge with private-equity firm HitecVision’s majority owned portfolio company Point Resources.
The new merged entity, which will be named Var Energi, will be jointly owned by Eni with 69.6% stake and HitecVision with 30.4% interest.
Independent Norwegian exploration & production company Var Energi’s portfolio will have a wide geographical coverage, from the Barents Sea to the North Sea with reserves and resources of more than 1,250 million barrels of oil equivalent (Mboe).
Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi said: “This is a fundamental step ahead in our strategy to reinforce Eni’s presence in OECD countries with further upstream potential, such as Norway.”
Eni said that the new company will have a capacity of around 180,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd) this year from 17 producing oil and gas fields.
Point Resources CEO Morten Mauritzen said: “Vår Energi will be one of the largest independent E&P companies in Norway, with strong growth ambitions for the future.
“A large portfolio of operated and non-operated fields, increased focus on exploration and many development projects means that it will go forward as one of the most exciting companies in the industry.”
Var Energi plans to reach production capacity of 250,000 barrel of oil equivalent per day (boepd) by 2023 by developing more than 500 Mboe in ten existing assets.
Over the next five years, the firm intends to invest more than NOK65bn ($8bn) to bring these projects on stream as well as to revitalize older fields and explore for new resources, Eni said.
Eni Norge managing director Philip D Hemmens said: “The new company shall have the ambition, capacity and competency to deliver on its aggressive growth plans to be a safe and sustainable independent Norwegian E&P company for many years to come.”
The merger, however, is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. It is planned to be completed by the end of 2018.