HOUSTON (Reuters) - Swiss commodities trader AOT Energy on Monday confirmed it is in discussions with potential investors over a stake in the company and that it has this year pared its staff.
On Friday, Reuters reported the firm was mulling a sale of part or all of its business amid shrinking credit lines, and that AOT Energy’s chief financial officer and managing director in Houston were exiting the firm.
AOT Energy said in a statement in response on its website on Monday that it was in talks with “several strategic investors to co-invest in the acquisition” of the 51 percent of the company controlled by Belgium’s Frere Group. The talks were aimed at “enhancing” the business of both parties, said Martin Fasser, AOT Energy’s head of corporate affairs.
Fasser declined to comment further.
Management, traders and some employees hold the remaining 49 percent stake.
The statement also said the firm had parted with its Houston-based senior management team “due to disagreements in organization and management.”
AOT Energy in 2016 initiated a management buy-out from its parent, Frere Group. Ahead of the buy-out, the company was restructured and its equity reduced, leading to a smaller credit line, Fasser said on Monday.
Its credit lines are “significantly over” $2 billion, he added.
Reporting by Liz Hampton, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien