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Puma Energy to sell Australia fuels business for A$425m

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Singapore's Puma Energy, the retail and midstream arm of global commodities trader Trafigura, said on Thursday it would sell its Australian commercial and retail fuels business to Chevron Australia for A$425 million (S$390.4 million).

[BENGALURU] Singapore's Puma Energy, the retail and midstream arm of global commodities trader Trafigura, said on Thursday it would sell its Australian commercial and retail fuels business to Chevron Australia for A$425 million (S$390.4 million).

The sale by the company, which is 49 per cent-owned by Geneva-based Trafigura, comes amid increasing pressure to rebalance its books after a decade-long buying spree.

Last month, sources familiar with the sale told Reuters the firm would accept a hefty discount to what it paid and that the assets would likely fetch no more than US$500 million, which they said would be a sharp drop in price.

Puma entered the Australian market in 2013 with the purchase of Ausfuel, Neumann and Central Combined Group assets.

Media reports at the time said it paid around US$850 million for the Ausfuel and Neumann assets. "The acquisition will provide Chevron with a stable market for production volumes from our refining joint ventures in Asia and create a foundation for sustainable earnings growth," Mark Nelson, Chevron's executive vice president for downstream and chemicals said in a statement.

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Trafigura last week reported its lowest annual net profit in nearly a decade after a string of losses in its physical asset portfolio.

Puma Energy was among Trafigura's loss-making businesses, with a net loss of US$500 million for the year ended Sept 30, and was in the process of being overhauled.

Puma said its bitumen business in Australia was not part of the transaction.

REUTERS

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