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MOL looking to make acquisitions

Hungarian oil and gas company MOL intends to make acquisitions in the Central and Eastern European region and elsewhere if the market opportunity to do so presents itself, MOL Refining and Marketing Division Commercial Director Ferenc Horváth said in Mantova, Italy on Thursday.

Horváth did not exclude the possibility of MOL’s further expansion in Northern Italy, adding that the company’s potential acquisitions would be in both the West and the East. MOL acquired Italiana Energia e Servizi (IES) in 2007 and will start a €200 million development of the refinery to meet EU environmental regulations and to increase the production of diesel from the current 40% to 50%. Horváth said the refinery in Mantova processes 2.6 million tons of oil a year. It has a market share of 3% in Italy.

According to press reports, MOL paid less than €800 million for IES in July 2007, a price that including debts of €300 million. The acquisition increased MOL’s refining capacity 20%. IES operates a network of 183 petrol stations, 40 of which it owns. MOL said it planned to increase capacity of the IES refinery to 3mtpa with a corresponding increase in the crude pipeline capacity in the next five years. MOL said it would also improve IES’s product range by boosting the yield of highly demanded middle distillate. IES reported net profit of €43 million (about $67 million), EBITDA of €98 million and revenue of €1,295 billion ($2,028 billion) in its business year ended June 30, 2006. (MTI-Econews)