Foreign Energy Tit-Bits

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Saudi Aramco to Acquire Valvoline’s Business for $2.65bn

In a deal expected to close in late 2022 or early 2023, Saudi Aramco has said it will acquire Kentucky-based motor oil maker Valvoline’s business for $2.65 billion as the Dhahran-based company seeks to expand its operations and partnerships.

The oil major signed an equity purchase agreement to acquire Valvoline’s Global Products business, the companies said on Monday. The deal is however subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

Aramco will benefit from the unit’s and distribution network, significant research and development capabilities, strong partnerships with major manufacturers and global brand recognition as it pursues to extend the brand globally, it said in a statement.

“Valvoline’s global products business fits perfectly with Aramco’s growth strategy for as it will leverage our global base oils production, contribute to our R&D capabilities and strengthen our existing relationships with OEMs [original equipment manufacturers],” said Mohammed Al Qahtani, Aramco’s senior of downstream.

Aramco, the world’s largest oil-exporting company, will pay for the acquisition with cash, Valvoline said in a separate statement.

Shell Staff in Line for 8% Bonus After Record Profits

Shell employees will receive a one-off 8% bonus after the energy company reported record profits from the sharp rise in energy price. Most staff at the oil company — which employs about 82,000 people worldwide — will be eligible for the pay boost.

Those at executive level or higher will be excluded from the taxable payout. Shell said the award reflects the company’s current financial success but has no link to the rising cost-of-living crisis in the UK.

Shell representative said: “The award enables those employees to share in our current operational and financial success — it is not a response to inflation or cost-of-living challenges.”

Shell said last week that its adjusted profit hit nearly £9.5 billion ($11.5bn) for the second quarter of the year in a record set of results, a trend replicated across the industry.

Shell said it would return billions of dollars to its shareholders after posting its quarterly financial results last month.

White House Says Biden Focus Is on Keeping Oil Prices Down After OPEC+ Output Increase

The Biden administration is focused on keeping oil prices down, the White House said on Wednesday after OPEC+ members decided top raise oil output by 100,000 barrels per day, an amount analysts said was an insult after the president’s trip to Saudi Arabia.

“What we’re focused on is keeping those prices down,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters at a briefing. “We wanted to see some increases in the production before we announced the trip and we actually saw that in that first week of June.”


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