After slowing down its M&A machine considerably over the past two years, National Oilwell Varco Inc. is looking at acquisitions in the billion-dollar range.
The largest U.S. maker of oilfield equipment made seven acquisitions last year for a total of $86 million, a sharp drop from 2013, when it spent $2.4 billion in cash to buy Robbins & Myers Inc. Up until Clay Williams took over as chief executive officer in early 2014, National Oilwell Varco had made at least $1 billion in acquisitions for each of the three previous years, according to federal filings.
“We’ve had some larger acquisition opportunities we’ve looked at,” Williams said in an interview Monday in New Orleans at the Scotia Howard Weil Energy Conference. “We have a lot of liquidity and a lot of access to capital, so I think we have a broad range of things that we can consider.”
Last month National Oilwell Varco reported its biggest quarterly loss since 2000 as customers cope with the worst crude market downturn in decades by cutting orders for new rigs, pipes and other gear in the oil patch. The company ended the year with $2.1 billion in cash and $3.6 billion in undrawn capacity on its revolving credit facility.
National Oilwell, which has seven buy ratings from analysts, 24 holds and six sell recommendations, has fallen 3 percent this year.
Published: January 29, 2023