Chevron in advance talks on sale of Pakistan and Egypt retail business

chevron LogoUS oil giant Chevron Corp is in advanced talks to sell its retail business in Pakistan and Egypt worth around $300 million, according to several media reports.

Chevron had announced in March 2012 that it was exiting the retail business in Australia, Egypt and Pakistan, as part of a global trend of major global oil companies shedding their downstream assets – refining, marketing and retail sales – to focus on the more profitable upstream businesses, such as oil and gas exploration and development.

Chevron's assets in Pakistan include 540 retail outlets that operate under the Caltex brand name, two storage depots with a capacity of about 12,000 tons, a 11-per cent stake in a cross-country oil pipeline, and a 12-per cent stake in Pakistan Refinery.

For 2012, Chevron Pakistan had revenues of around Rs108 billion and the sale of the assets in Pakistan may fetch the California-based company between $110 million to $176 million, according to analysts.

Several Pakistani media reports had earlier said that Attock Petroleum, Pakistan's third-largest oil marketing company, has conducted due diligence and has emerged as the frontrunner for Chevron's retail assets in the country.

Other interested firms are Byco Petroleum, an oil refining and marketing company, Nishat Group, a diversified conglomerate with interests in banking, textiles, cement and power, and French energy giant Total SA.

Reuters today reported that Chevron has received at least three non-binding bids for the Egyptian and Pakistani assets from regional and international energy companies.