Black Gold

Oilfield giant Schlumberger to acquire Sema, add IT to its offerings

Schlumberger, a company probably more known as an oilfield giant than e-commerce force, has announced that it will acquire information technology and business service company Sema. The offer will be made on the basis of approximately $8.09 (560 UK pence) in cash for each Sema share and approximately $16.18 (1120 UK pence) in cash for each Sema ADS (each ADS represents 2 Sema shares). The offer values the transaction at approximately $5.2 billion (approximately 3.6 billion UK pounds) fully diluted for the exercise of all outstanding options.

Euan Baird, chairman and CEO of Schlumberger, explained the importance of this transaction to Schlumberger. The acquisition of Sema will enable us to accelerate significantly our existing information technology strategy. It will enhance our capabilities and critical mass in systems integration, widen our IT skills and create revenue synergies in many of our core competencies. I am confident that the excellent personal relationships which we have developed with senior Sema management and strong cultural fit between our organizations will facilitate the integration and subsequent growth of Sema within the Schlumberger group. We believe that Sema is the catalyst that will help us approach the five-year goals for growth and profitability that I set out two years ago.

Baird further stated, For several years, we have been actively exploiting IT to improve our internal business processes and efficiencies, to grow our existing businesses and to develop new IT-based revenue generation opportunities. This focus on leveraging IT has taken the form of extensions of existing Schlumberger business groups and also the creation of new businesses which leverage Schlumberger's long term expertise in network development and management, IP based applications, backed by a strong culture of global support. Such initiatives have been ongoing in all three of the Schlumberger core vertical markets: oilfield services, wireless telecom and utilities. We believe that it has become increasingly clear that the winners in the Internet age will be companies with excellent products and market shares in specific verticals that are able to substantially enhance their business models with these new technologies.