November 13, 2017 / 10:05 PM / 5 days ago

Canada's Cenovus finishes main divesture plans with Weyburn sale

CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - Canada’s Cenovus Energy Inc (CVE.TO) has reached a deal to sell its Weyburn oil facility for C$940 million ($738.53 million), the company said on Monday, completing its main divesture plans.

Weyburn, to be sold to the western Canadian energy company Whitecap Resources Inc (WCP.TO), is the last of four main assets for which Cenovus has reached agreements to sell to pay down debt incurred in the C$16.8 billion acquisition of ConocoPhillips (COP.N) assets this year.

The sale of Cenovus’s majority interest in Weyburn would bring its asset sale proceeds to just under C$4 billion, compared with its target of C$4 billion to C$5 billion in asset sales.

Reuters last week reported Whitecap was a front-runner in bidding for the asset.

Whitecap said in a statement it has agreed to buy a 62.1 percent operated working interest in Weyburn, which produces 14,600 barrels of oil equivalent per day, and other minor assets in the Saskatchewan province.

Cenvous said in a statement the sales of Weyburn and other assets would help it retire a C$3.6 billion bridge loan it took for the ConocoPhillips deal, a move that is expected to please investors who balked at how the deal was financed.

The acquisition eventually led to Cenovus’s naming Alex Pourbaix, a former executive at TransCanada Corp (TRP.TO), as its chief executive officer, replacing Brian Ferguson, who led the deal.

Cenovus has said it may also sell part of the Deep Basin gas assets it acquired from ConocoPhillips.

The company has been talking to potential buyers, sources have said.

Reporting by Ethan LouEditing by Sandra Maler

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