NEW YORK (The Deal) -- Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) has agreed to sell a 23% stake in a Brazilian oil field to Qatar Petroleum International for $1 billion, striking a second big-ticket deal in just over a week as it offloads assets to cut capital expenditure.
Shell will retain a 50% stake in Block 10 of the offshore Parque das Conchas field, returning its holding to the level it was at in October, before it exercised a pre-emption right to increase its stake and block an acquisition by China's Sinochem Group.
Shell paid about $1 billion to buy the 23% stake from Brazil's Petroleo Brasileiro, meaning it will make little or no profit on the transaction.
"This brings a strategic partner into the holding, someone Shell works with in other regions," said a person with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be named. "It isn't really a commercial deal."
Shell has tied itself to Qatar after spending about $19 billion to build Pearl GTL, the world's largest gas-to-liquid plant, in the Gulf State. Shell also owns a 30% stake in the related Qatargas 4 liquefied natural gas project, where it is a junior partner to Qatar Petroleum, which owns 70%.
The announcement of the Brazil deal comes a day before Shell's new CEO, Ben van Beurden, is expected to flesh out plans at his company's fourth-quarter results to sell assets and reduce investment. Shell last month warned that profit for 2013 will be about $16.8 billion, down from $27.2 billion in 2012 after capitalspending nearly doubled to $44.3 billion.