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Merger pace surges toward summer’s end

The flow of business deals in Louisiana gained significant momentum in August with 20 transactions announced or closed compared with eight during the same month last year. It’s the highest number of transactions since April 2008.

A deal involving 33 Exxon On the Run gas stations in south Louisiana will result in the locations being rebranded as Circle K sites.

Shell Offshore Inc., the New Orleans-based subsidiary of the Dutch energy giant, sold a 64.3 percent interest in the Fairway gas field and Yellowhammer gas processing plant to W&T Offshore Inc. of Houston. The $36.7 million deal includes obligations for dismantling wells and other infrastructure when production ends.
Purchasing small fields with falling production is typical for W&T, which extends the life of such fields through maintenance and limited drilling.

Oil service company Allison Marine Contractors in St. Mary Parish sold to New York-based Lincolnshire Management. The private equity firm was attracted to Allison Marine because of its focus on generating revenue from every stage of the offshore platform lifecycle.

Allison Marine provides refurbishment, resale and recycling of platforms and equipment, and fixed-price platform decommissioning project management. The company expects to add about 100 local jobs over the next year.

As part of a multi-year process to exit the retail fuel business, Exxon Mobil Corp. in August agreed to sell 33 south Louisiana gas stations to Canadian convenience store chain Alimentation Couche-Tard. Exxon’s “On the Run” stations will be rebranded “Circle K” convenience stores and will increase Circle K’s Gulf South presence to 318 locations.

With 5,795 stores, Couche-Tard is the largest independent convenience store operator in North America.

Waste company IESI Inc., made another Louisiana acquisition last month with the purchase of The Recycling Foundation in Lafayette for $27.5 million. The Recycling Foundation provides recycling services and holds curbside contracts for East Baton Rouge Parish, Lafayette, Zachary, Youngsville and Carencro.

IESI purchased Chalmette-based SDT Waste and Debris Services in June.

G.F. Gay Le Breton, is managing director of Chaffe & Associates Inc. Securities offered through Chaffe Securities, Inc., member FINRA/SIPC.

By: G.F. Gay LeBreton, Chaffe and Associates