Engineering and construction services provider Aker Solutions said it had entered into a share purchase agreement to transfer operations within its Process and Construction business area to Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. According to Aker, the transaction will allow the businesses involved in the transfer to continue to grow under new ownership, as Aker concentrates its strategic efforts on its core oil and gas business. The all-cash transaction value is estimated at NOK 5.5 billion ($913 million), subject to closing adjustments, and the parties expect to complete the transaction during the first quarter of 2011.

Aker Solutions stated that the transaction is expected to have a positive net cash effect of approximately NOK 3.8 billion ($634 million), and a cash to treasury effect of approximately NOK 4.2 billion ($701 million). Net gain for Aker Solutions compared to book value of the businesses is estimated to be a total of NOK 2.4 billion ($400 million).

Oyvind Eriksen, executive chairman of Aker Solutions, said: “In August, Aker Solutions announced the decision to separate the P&C business area from the Aker Solutions Group. Since then, we have explored alternative methods of separation, including an IPO and public listing. As the alternatives matured over the recent weeks, a sale to Jacobs evolved as the preferred solution industrially as well as financially. This transaction provides a very good outcome for all parties. These businesses fit well with Jacobs and support their company’s ambitions for continued strong growth among its market segments, particularly in the energy and environmental; mining and metals; and onshore downstream process markets served by P&C. “For Aker Solutions, this represents a further step in becoming much more streamlined and focused on our core oil and gas activities going forward.” As a result of the transaction, about 3,500 of the roughly 30,000 people employed by Aker Solutions, will be transferred from Aker activities located across operations in the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, USA, Canada, Peru, Chile, Australia, China and South Africa. Jacobs Engineering Group reported 2010 revenues of about $10 billion. The U.S.-based company has over 50,000 employees and approximately 160 offices in more than 20 countries, including operations in North America, the United Kingdom, mainland Europe, the Middle East, India, Australia, Africa and Asia.

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