LUKOIL is looking for buyers for its power generation

Vagit Alekperov's company is trying to merge its assets.
LUKOIL again intends to sell its assets in power generation, obtained during the reform of RAO UES. In particular, Kommersant’s sources say that the oil company is trying to negotiate with Inter RAO, but the parties are clearly far from agreement. Now the key asset value is the new power units, receiving, according to estimates, about 8 billion rubles. EBITDA per year. The market value of LUKOIL power plants by analysts was estimated at 35 billion rubles.

LUKOIL is once again looking for a buyer for its power plants in southern Russia, sources familiar with the oil company's proposal told Kommersant. Attempts to negotiate are being undertaken, including with Inter RAO, the Kommersant sources said. In the energy holding, “Kommersant” was only informed that they constantly monitor the market to identify assets that could form the value added group in LUKOIL did not respond to the query “Kommersant”.

LUKOIL in 2008, at the end of the reform, RAO UES of Russia bought the allocated from the UGK TGK-8 holding, which included small thermal power plants in the Astrakhan, Volgograd, Rostov regions, Dagestan, Krasnodar and Stavropol Territories (large power stations were not included in this lot). Subsequently, LUKOIL broke TGK-8 into several regional energy companies. The total capacity of this generation is 5.7 GW, of which 71% is commercial generation operating on the wholesale market, the rest is small stations at enterprises in the areas of oil production and processing.

One of the interlocutors of “Kommersant” notes that LUKOIL has already searched for buyers for its generation several times, including negotiating with the same “Inter RAO”, but to no avail. According to Kommersant, the main disagreement is that LUKOIL is trying to raise the value of its assets due to new power units built under power supply contracts (DPM). Such blocks are now considered to be the most profitable in the market: return on investments is guaranteed for CDM at the expense of increased consumer payments. LUKOIL on DPM has built 950 MW. According to Vladimir Sklyar from VTB Capital, the company earns about 8 billion rubles from the DPM-blocks. EBITDA per year and at current prices, they can cost about 28-30 billion rubles. “Outside PDM, energy assets are virtually zero,” the analyst believes, noting that the total business valuation does not exceed 35 billion rubles. taking into account the debt.

There are also other difficulties, say sources of “Kommersant”, in particular, the problem with the supply of associated gas - LUKOIL partially supplies it to its own generation. “Because of this factor, we will have to carry out a complex deal and split up the old supply chain, but LUKOIL does not want to do this,” explains the source. In addition, in his opinion, there is a risk that the transaction will not be approved by Rosneftegaz (owns 27.63% of Inter RAO and a controlling stake of Rosneft, the head of the oil company Igor Sechin heads the board of directors of Inter RAO) for the specific relationship between Igor Sechin and Vagit Alekperov (main co-owner and head of LUKOIL. “Kommersant”) ”. The relations of oil companies are considered difficult, for example, recently Rosneft filed a complaint with FAS against LUKOIL, its production partner at the Trebsa and Titov fields in the Nenets Autonomous District, for high tariffs for handling this oil at the Varandey terminal.

Electrogeneration is a business with a significantly lower return on assets (ROA), another profile of regulatory risks, ruble revenues, said Vladimir Sklyar. One of the possible reasons for the new negotiations on the sale of the analyst calls the government's plans to introduce to consumers a fee for unused reserve network capacity. Partial generation was used by LUKOIL for its own needs, commissioning a reserve charge makes the stations unattractive, he notes. Theoretically, Inter RAO has about 150 billion rubles. "Money cushion," explains Mr. Sklyar, and now generates 60-70 billion rubles. free cash flow annually. “In light of the reluctance to increase dividends, as stated by the holding’s management at the last conference call, M & A is a key channel for the use of these funds,” the analyst notes.