Caltex to sell bitumen business

Group enters conditional agreement for confidential sale to Trafigura Beheer.

Caltex Australia (CTX) has entered a conditional agreement to sell its Sydney-based bitumen business to Puma Energy, a subsidiary of Trafigura Beheer.

Investors responded well to the news. At 1055 AEDT, Caltex shares were 1.09% higher at $18.44, against a benchmark index lift of 0.99%.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange, Caltex said the terms of the agreement were confidential, and subject to a number of conditions being met, including approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board.

Caltex Australia managing director Julian Segal said bitumen was no longer deemed a core business going forward, particularly following the decision to shut down its oil refinery at Kurnell last year.

"The decision to divest is consistent with our strategy and it makes operational and financial sense," he said.

"Caltex's strategy is to remain Australia's leading transport fuels player."