LONDON -- Centrica has reached an agreement with Marathon Oil to acquire interests in a package of non-operated oil and gas assets in Norway for $375 million in cash. Centrica will acquire interests in the Heimdal area of the Norwegian North Sea, which includes producing fields, discoveries, and exploration prospects.
Centrica will acquire a 23.8% interest in the Heimdal field, a 46.9% interest in Vale, and a 20% interest in Skirne/Byggve, all of which are producing fields. It will also acquire interests in the Heimdal East and Peik discoveries, which could be developed by 2012. Gas currently being produced from the fields is contracted until 2011 at prices directly linked to the UK market. After 2011, Centrica could deliver the gas to the UK or continental Europe.
"This investment is in line with our strategy to reduce the group's exposure to movements in gas prices through securing additional upstream assets," says Sam Laidlaw, chief executive of Centrica. "It also increases the level of gas reserves to supply our British Gas customers and gives us our first producing interests in Norway, building on our existing exploration position."