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Big Changes in Store for Statoil

Bottom Line: Big changes are in store for Norway’s state-run oil giant, Statoil: After winning parliamentary elections last week, Norway’s new Conservative-led government may move to divest 16% of its stake in Statoil to raise $11 billion, while the Norwegian oil giant prepares to sell some of its North Sea assets to Austria’s OMV, and the head of the country’s energy union calls for the resignation of the Statoil CEO after a report reveals significant security gaps ahead of the terrorist attack and hostage incident at the Amenas facility in Algeria early this year.   

Analysis: The Conservative Party of Norway may cut its stake in Statoil from 67% to 51% after winning parliamentary elections last week. The coalition won 96 seats out the total 169 seats to defeat Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg’s Labor-led coalition. The Conservatives took the majority position within the new coalition, with 48 seats.  It ran on a platform of reducing its economic footprint in Norway by divesting some of its stakes in a range of companies. At the same time, Statoil is also planning to sell some of its stakes in the Gudrun and Gullfaks oil fields offshore Norway, reducing both to a 51% stake—from 75% for Gudrun and 70% for Gullfaks. The assets will go to Austria’s OMV for $2.65 billion. OMV will also buy Statoil’s 30% stake in the Chevron-led Rosebank discovery offshore UK (off the Shetland Islands).  In total, Statoil…

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