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OMV Petrom Rejects Report of Gas-Station-Sale Talks With NIS

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OMV Petrom SA, Romania’s biggest oil company, said it’s not in talks with Serbia’s Naftna Industrija Srbije over the possible sale of part of its gas station network, rejecting a newspaper report today.

“Petrom denies the information published by Ziarul Financiar regarding a potential transaction for the selling of 139 filling stations to the oil company NIS,” the Bucharest- based company said in an e-mailed statement. “The company evaluates constantly the performance of its own filling stations network in order to optimize it.”

Ziarul Financiar said that NIS, which is majority-owned by Russia’s OAO Gazprom Neft, was seeking to buy a quarter of Petrom’s 550 gas stations and had started due diligence. The potential transaction might be worth 100 million euros ($136 million), Ziarul Financiar said, citing unidentified people.

“NIS and OMV Petrom are not currently negotiating about a takeover of a part” of the network in Romania, NIS spokeswoman Sanja Lubardic said by e-mail, adding that the companies “closely cooperate in exchanging experience and in mutual consultation, but a possible purchase of the gas stations has not been mentioned.”

“Romania is among priorities for NIS businesses, for production projects as well as for development of retail,” NIS said.

OMV, which owns 51 percent in Petrom, announced last week that it plans to sell 1 billion euros of refining and marketing assets by 2014.



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