December 4, 2017 / 8:05 AM / a year ago

Norway's Aker BP sells 10 pct stakes in Valhall, Hod oilfields

OSLO, Dec 4 (Reuters) - Norwegian oil firm Aker BP has agreed to sell 10 percent stakes in two North Sea fields to private equity-backed Pandion Energy for an undisclosed amount to help pay for expansion plans in the area, it said on Monday.

The deal will leave Aker BP with holdings of 90 percent in each field, and will help pay for projects such as the Valhall Flank West, which is estimated to come on stream in 2020.

Aker BP in October announced a $2 billion deal to buy Hess Corp's 64.05 percent stake in the Valhall field and 62.5 percent in Hod, raising its ownership to 100 percent, but added it would seek a partner for the licences.

"After we announced the Hess transaction, we have seen strong interest to partner with Aker BP in the Valhall area. Through this transaction, we get a partner that shares our ambition of developing the upside potential in these fields," Aker BP Chief Executive Karl Johnny Hersvik said in a statement.

Pandion in June won permission from Norway's energy ministry to hold oil and gas licences, and is backed by private equity fund manager Kerogen Capital.

Aker BP's top owners are Norwegian investment firm Aker ASA with a 40 percent stake and BP Plc with 30 percent.

The original Hess transaction and the Pandion deal are both subject to customary approvals by regulators, which Aker BP said it expected to receive by the end of 2017. (Reporting by Terje Solsvik; Editing by Mark Potter)

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