Rather than announce it in Australia, where it is based and where most of his company’s shareholders live Woodside CEO Peter Coleman has revealed plans to cut its stake in two key assets to raise funds for other developments in an interview with a global news agency.
In an interview with Reuters, Coleman nominated stakes in the Scarborough gas field in WA and Canada’s Kitimat liquefied natural gas project as being available for sale.
Woodside is Australia’s Number 1 stand alone oil and gas producer (BHP’s oil business is larger) and holds a 75% stake in the $US11 billion ($A16 billion) Scarborough gas field and 50% in the Kitimat project in British Columbia.
“We just look at that and say from capital management and risk management points of view we would rather hold less equity,” Reuters quoted Mr. Coleman. “It also helps us fund through this next expenditure cycle if we can reduce our capital requirement.
“In a major project where we are operating, we would like to be between 40 percent and 60 percent equity. It kind of makes sense. When you’re non-operator, anywhere between 20 percent and 40 percent is the right number.”
Woodside hopes to make a final investment decision on Scarborough and the $US20.5 billion Browse projects in 2020.
Coleman’s comments to Reuters came after speculation Saudi Aramco could be interested in Scarborough project that could feed into and expand Woodside’s existing Pluto LNG facility.
Woodside shares fell 0.4% to $32.19.