Schlumberger acquires 20 % stake in Chinese rival Anton Oilfield Services

Schlumberger Ltd, the world's largest oilfield-services company, yesterday acquired a minority stake in its Chinese rival Anton Oilfield Services Group (Antonoil), for an undisclosed sum.

Schlumberger acquired 423,361,944 shares, representing approximately 20.10 per cent stake in the Beijing-based company.

Antonoil first entered into a strategic cooperation agreement with Schlumberger in 2010 for drilling fluids and well-cementing services. Antonoil believes that the stake sale will allow both companies to collaborate further and tap the huge Chinese market.

Antonoil said that as a minority shareholder, Houston, Texas-based Schlumberger will not be involved in the management of Antonoil and the company will continue to operate independently and develop its business under its own business strategies.

Hong Kong-listed Anton is an independent oilfield services provider offering one-stop oil and gas field development technical services to oil companies. Its services and solutions span across the drilling technology, well completion, down-hole operation, and oil production phases in the development cycle.

Antonoil has operations bases across China's major onshore oil and natural gas basins and an international headquarter in Dubai with an extensive network across the Middle East, Central Asia, Africa, and Americas.

International oilfield services companies have set their sights on the Chinese market and have recently increased their investments there. Chinese oilfield services companies have also found it advantageous to strengthen their market clout by deepening their cooperation with their international counterparts, said Antonoil in a statement.

With 2011 revenues of $39.54 billion, Schlumberger is the world's leading oilfield services company.