Subsidiary signs agreement with Skeie Group

Our Bureau

Chennai, June 16

Aban Loyd is set to pick up 33.76 per cent stake in Sinvest ASA of Norway. The consideration for the purchase of about 2.05 crore shares at Rs 1,000 each, works out to Rs 2,050 crore.

The company on Friday announced to the stock exchanges that its wholly-owned subsidiary in Singapore, Aban Singapore Pte Ltd, had entered into an agreement with the Skeie Group of Norway, which owns the shares.

After the deal is over, Aban will be the largest shareholder in the company and will have control over the management.

Taking into account the drilling rigs and ships it possesses, those under construction and those controlled by it through its subsidiaries or joint ventures, Sinvest has 10 drilling assets.

Drilling assets

Aban Loyd recently announced acquisition of an Indonesian company, which owns six rigs. Aban itself has 10 drilling assets. The acquisition of controlling stake in Sinvest gives Aban effective control over 26 drilling assets, which makes it the ninth largest drilling company in the world and the biggest in Asia.

In a statement, the Chairman of Aban, Mr Reji Abraham, has said that the company has no intention of buying the remaining shares in Sinvest.

UTI Bank Ltd acted as the mandated lead arranger for arranging the credit facilities for the transaction, while three other banks Bank of Baroda, Bank of India and Export-Import Bank of India acted as lead arrangers for arranging the credit facilities. Motilal Oswal Investment Advisors Pvt. Ltd acted as advisor.

The acquisition is happening at a time when Sinvest itself is undergoing a restructure.

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(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated June 17, 2006)
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