Second highest bidder awarded tender for privatization of Petkim

Turkey's Competition Board has approved the sale of state-run petrochemicals company Petkim to the second highest bidder in a July tender. A consortium of the Azerbaijani oil company Socar, Turkey's Turcas and Saudi-based Injaz Projects had made the second highest bid of US$2.04 bln (€1.39 bln) for a 51% stake in the company. The Competition Board's decision is subject to approval by the Privatization Board for the takeover to be finalized. No reason has been offered as to why the tender was not awarded to the highest bidder, a consortium of the Kazakh Caspi Neft and Eurasia companies, the Russian bank Troika Dialogue and a number of Kazakh investors, which offered US$2.05 bln. Turkey held a first tender for sale of 88.86% stake of Petkim in June 2003, which the controversial business family Uzan won with a bid of US$605 mln. But the deal was cancelled two months later when the financially-strapped Uzans failed to fulfill required conditions. A second tender in August 2003 failed for lack of investor interest. In April 2005, 34.5% stake was sold to Turkish and foreign investors in a public offering worth $267 mln. About 39% of Petkim shares are currently traded on the Istanbul stock exchange.
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