Merged Woodside becomes top 10 global independent energy firm

Australian LNG player Woodside said it has completed its merger with BHP’s oil and gas business, becoming a top 10 global independent energy company by hydrocarbon production and the largest energy company listed on the ASX.

Woodside said on Wednesday it has acquired the entire share capital of BHP Petroleum International and issued 914,768,948 new Woodside shares to BHP, which the latter would distribute to its eligible shareholders.

In addition, Woodside will receive net cash of about $1 billion, which includes the cash remaining in the BHPP bank accounts immediately prior to completion.

“This reflects $1.8 billion of net cash flows generated by BHPP between the effective date of 1 July 2021 and completion, less $0.8 billion representing BHP’s entitlement to cash dividends paid by Woodside over the same period,” it said.

The new Woodside shares will start trading on the Australian Securities Exchange
(ASX) on June 2, 2022, while trading of Woodside American Depositary Shares on the New York Stock Exchange will start on the same day.

Woodside said it has commenced activities to integrate the two organizations, including standardization ofreporting across all jurisdictions.

The company revealed in November it had signed a binding merger agreement with BHP’s petroleum business. On the same day, it also took a final investment decision on the Scarborough and Pluto LNG Train 2 developments worth about $12 billion.

After that, the firm said it would appoint at least four BHP executives to the leadership team of the merged company.

One of the most significant events in Woodside’s 67-year history

Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill said completion of the merger was one of the most significant events in Woodside’s 67-year history and marked the start of a new chapter for the company.

“Today, Woodside begins its journey as a global company, becoming a bigger supplier of the energy that the world needs right now and will continue to demand in the future,” O’Neill said.

She said the merger delivers a “diverse portfolio of quality operating assets, plus a suite of growth opportunities across oil, gas and new energy that promises ongoing value for our shareholders.”

According to the CEO, the merger combines the “best of our two organisations, providing the leadership and technical expertise necessary to help Woodside thrive in a dynamic and competitive industry.”

“We are focused on unlocking pre-tax annual synergies of more than $400 million as we merge the two businesses,” O’Neill said.

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