April 23, 2014 / 1:46 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Thailand's PTTEP buys Hess assets in $1 bln deal - CEO

(Adds analyst comment, share price)

BANGKOK, April 23 (Reuters) - PTT Exploration and Production Pcl (PTTEP), Thailand’s top oil and gas explorer, has bought Hess Corp’s assets in Thailand in a $1 billion deal as part of its attempt to boost its gas business, the company’s CEO said on Wednesday.

“The deal is worth $1 billion. We have acquired the whole shares of Hess Thailand Holdings II Limited and Hess Exploration Thailand Company Limited,” Chief Executive Tevin Vongvanich said in a statement.

Hess, based in New York, said it would use the proceeds to purchase its shares under a $4 billion share buyback program.

The natural gas assets in the Sinphuhorm and Pailin Fields produced an average of 17,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day for Hess in 2013, the company said.

Analysts at Houston based energy-focused investment bank Simmons & Co International said the after-tax deal price was in line with its expectations for a valuation of $975 million.

Shares of Hess edged up 44 cents, or less than 1 percent, to $88.45 in morning New York Stock Exchange trading.

Reporting by Apornrath Phoonphongphiphat in Bangkok and Anna Driver in Houston; Editing by Paul Tait

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