EBRD sells 20 per cent of its shares in Romania’s OMV Petrom S.A.

By Anthony Williams

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The EBRD has sold 229,554,012 shares in OMV Petrom S.A., a leading company in the oil and gas sector located in Romania, which is listed on the Bucharest Stock Exchange.  The partial sale represented 20 per cent of the Bank’s holding.

The exit price per share represented a small discount to yesterday’s closing price of RON 0.395 on the Bucharest Stock Exchange. Raiffeisen Capital & Investment S.A. and Wood & Co. acted as joint bookrunners on the placement, which carries a 90-day lock-up.

The EBRD became a shareholder of Petrom in 2004 to support the privatisation of the state-owned national integrated oil and gas company with a holding of approximately 2.03 per cent.  This represented part of an effort to provide institutional strength to the company and to help promote its growth. By July 2004 OMV AG of Austria had purchased a controlling stake of 51.01 per cent.

Kevin Bortz, Director, Natural Resources, EBRD, said: “Our partial exit from Petrom comes as Romania’s attractiveness to institutional investors has grown. We are proud to have contributed to making Petrom the successful, strong and attractive company it is today. As an on-going shareholder, we remain committed to the excellent co-operation with Petrom as a leading partner in the region.”

Mariana Gheorghe, CEO of Petrom, said: “We are pleased with the on-going excellent co-operation with the EBRD, a premier financial institution, which remains an important shareholder of the company. We highly appreciate the support from the EBRD during the complex and successful transformation process of Petrom into a modern and sustainable company, including during the first years of the financial crisis. The success of this partial sale reflects strong investor demand for Petrom shares and support for management’s business strategy. This transaction will also positively contribute to Romanian capital market development by increasing liquidity on the Bucharest Stock Exchange”.

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