October 14, 2016 / 11:02 PM / in 2 years

UPDATE 1-Petrobras says in talks with Ultrapar to sell Liquigás unit

(Adds details, information from source, context)

SAO PAULO, Oct 14 (Reuters) - Brazil’s Petrobras said on Friday it is in advanced talks with local conglomerate Ultrapar Participações SA to sell its gas distribution unit Liquigás Distribuidora SA.

Petróleo Brasileiro SA, as the state-controlled oil company is formally known, said in a securities filing that the transaction has yet to be approved by the boards of both companies and antitrust bodies.

Ultrapar said in a separate filing that the negotiation is for the acquisition of all Liquigás shares. No financial details were disclosed.

A source with direct knowledge of the talks, however, told Reuters that Ultrapar outbid three other companies during the selling process, including Supergasbrás, a local subsidiary of Dutch energy company SHV Holdings NV.

The source, who requested anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the negotiation, said Ultrapar’s bid valued Liquigás at close to 3 billion reais ($935 million).

Liquigás packs and distributes liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in all but two Brazilian states, and owns 25 operation centers.

The likely Liquigás deal is part of an asset-sale program at financially troubled Petrobras designed to trim the firm’s massive $125 billion of debtload, the largest in the global oil industry.

Last month, the company announced the sale of 90 percent of its natural gas pipeline unit NTS to a group led by Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management Inc for $5.2 billion.

Petrobras plans to sell $15.1 billion in assets by year-end and $19.5 billion more in 2017 and 2018. ($1 = 3.206 Brazilian reais) (Reporting by Marcelo Teixeira and Tatiana Bautzer; editing by Chris Reese, G Crosse)

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