BRASILIA, Aug 14 (Reuters) - Brazil’s largest power utility, Eletrobras, said on Friday its board has approved the restructuring of 3.3 billion reais ($946.78 million) of debt owed to state-run oil company Petrobras and its fuel distribution unit BR Distribuidora.
The restructuring paves the way for indebted Petroleo Brasileiro, as the oil company is formally called, to move ahead with a planned initial public offering of its distribution business.
The debt, which was run up by purchases of fuel supplies for the company’s thermoelectric power plants in Northern Brazil, will be repaid in 18 monthly installments, Eletrobras said in a statement.
BR Distribuidora, which had 121 billion reais in revenue last year from Brazil’s largest gasoline, ethanol and diesel station network, was recently valued at about $10 billion by UBS Securities analysts.
Petrobras could offer at least 25 percent of BR Distribuidora that would be part of its $15 billion divestment plan to raise capital, reduce debt and recover investor confidence in the wake of a massive corruption scandal in the midst of falling oil prices.
Earlier on Friday, Petrobras said it will take a 2 billion reais charge against third-quarter earnings to pay a disputed tax bill with Brazil’s federal government.
$1 = 3.4855 Brazilian reais Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Leslie Adler