Eni Revisits Saipem Sale Plans

Source Press
Company ENI S.p.A.Saipem S.p.A. 
Tags Deal Rumours, Oil Services
Date July 25, 2014

(Reuters) The new management of Italy's Eni plans to press on with the sale of a controlling stake in oil services subsidiary Saipem so it can focus on the more lucrative business of finding oil and gas, sources informed Reuters.

Former Eni CEO Paolo Scaroni had sorted out plans to dispose of Saipem but they were put on hold when Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi drafted in new management to run the state-controlled oil giant.

Saipem became a liability for Eni last year when half its market value was wiped out by two profit warnings and a damaging investigation into alleged corruption in Algeria, which also engulfed Scaroni.'

"Enis new management is indeed ready to resume the sale of Saipem, though it first needs to cut its debt either via asset disposals or raising equity," a source close to the matter told Reuters. Eni has a 43 percent stake in Saipem and fully consolidates it on its balance sheet, including 5.5 billion euros of debt.

Saipem supplies engineering services, project management and construction services to oil and gas companies for both onshore and offshore projects and carries out drilling worldwide.

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