Oil and gas major Royal Dutch Shell is selling a number of assets, including its European liquid petroleum gas businesses, to fund a 28 billion pound capital spending programme, the FT reported on Monday, citing unnamed sources. The Anglo-Dutch giant has said it is looking to divest 15 percent of its global refining capacity as the European oil industry battles a drop in demand for oil products and 15 year-low margins. The FT said the oil company planned to raise $2-3 billion dollars by auctioning off assets that did not contribute to its growth plans, including refining and marketing operations in Europe and mature oil and gas field in the North Sea and Nigeria. A spokesman for Shell, Europe's largest oil company, declined to comment.
The paper said Swiss-bank Credit Suisse was advising on the deal and that a number of private equity firms, including Axa Private Equity, Bain Capital and PAI, were interested in acquiring the group's European liquid petroleum gas businesses. The oil major already agreed to sell its stake in three onshore oil licences in Nigeria at the end of January. Royal Dutch Shell made more than a one billion dollar loss in downstream business in the fourth quarter.