Kentz Said to Weigh Sale as Buyers Eye Irish Engineering FirmAaron Kirchfeld and Jeffrey McCracken
Kentz Corp., the Irish provider of engineering and construction services to the oil and gas industry, is considering selling itself after receiving interest from potential buyers, according to three people familiar with the matter.
Kentz received approaches from companies including Amec Plc, a U.K. engineer for energy projects, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private. SNC-Lavalin Group Inc., Canada’s largest engineering company, has also shown interest, one of the people said.
Kentz, which is based in Tipperary, Ireland, has gained 23 percent to 475.90 pence a share in London trading so far this year, valuing the company at 561 million pounds ($876 million).
The Mail on Sunday reported yesterday that Amec has been examining an 800 million-pound takeover of Kentz and that the Irish company may fetch as much as 700 pence a share, citing people it didn’t identify. Amec is unlikely to offer more than 600 pence a share, one person told Bloomberg News yesterday. SNC approached Kentz a few weeks ago and M&W Group GmbH of Germany has also shown interest, Mail on Sunday reported.
Officials at Kentz and Amec declined to comment, and SNC and M&W couldn’t be immediately reached for comment outside of regular business hours.
Kentz provides services to oil and gas, petrochemical and metals industries and has more than 14,500 employees, according to its website. The company’s shares have risen to the highest level since April 2012, helped by winning contracts in southern Africa.
Amec, which also provides engineering to the oil and gas and mining industries, has a market value of 3.22 billion pounds. The company has “ample opportunity” to make acquisitions, Chief Executive Officer Samir Brikho said in a Bloomberg Television interview this month.
SNC-Lavalin, which is based in Montreal, earlier this month cut its annual profit forecast and posted a surprise quarterly loss, hurt by fixed-price projects in North Africa.
M&W is a German engineering and construction company based in Stuttgart that is owned by Austria’s Stumpf Group, according to its website.