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Thursday, July 24, 2014  

Abu Dhabi to buy Spanish refiner Cepsa for $5b
MADRID/PARIS Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund IPIC is buying half of Cepsa from French oil major Total  for 3.7 billion euros ($5 billion), giving it control of the Spanish refining and marketing-focused group.  

IPIC, wholly owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, has a mandate to invest in the oil sector outside the emirate.  

The deal allows oil-rich Abu Dhabi to extend its refining capacity, while giving Total cash to invest in upstream developments.  

Total has been present in Spain for years through Cepsa and the sale of the stake immediately raised questions about the French oil giant’s strategy there.  

But it quickly dismissed speculation that it would use the money raised from the sale of its Cepsa holding to take control of Spanish rival Repsol by buying a 20 per cent stake from debt-laden builder Sacyr.  

“A takeover of Repsol would make no sense as this would go directly against our goal to reduce our European refinery capacities,” a Total spokesman said.  

Shares in Sacyr fell by nearly 5 per cent.   

IPIC, which already owns nearly half of the Spanish company, earlier launched a full bid for Cepsa at 28 euros per share, a 23 per cent premium to Tuesday’s close.  

Cepsa shares, which were suspended ahead of the announcement, reopened up 23.6 per cent at 28.19 euros.  

Reuters
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