In another sign that the oil industry is recovering, Oslo-based Aker BP has embarked on a shopping spree of sorts. It’s sending out clear signals that it’s interested in buying more stakes in Norway’s offshore oil fields.
Newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) reported Wednesday how shares in Aker BP (formed through the merger last year of Aker’s Det norske and BP’s Norwegian interests) jumped to a new high after Aker BP announced its purchase of Hess Norge’s fields for USD 2 billion in cash. Investors responded by driving up Aker BP’s market value up to NOK 55 billion.
Now the company, controlled by Norwegian industrialist Kjell Inge Røkke, is making it clear it wants to buy more. “The ambition is to develop and expand Aker BP, both organically and through acquisitions,” its chairman Øyvind Eriksen told DN.
Aker BP currently operates the Alvheim, Ivar Aasen, Skarv, Valhall, Hod, Ula and Tambar oil fields on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, and is a partner in the large oil field Johan Sverdrup.