Politics and a lack of focus and speed killed CNOOC’s chances of success. What lies ahead for the cash-rich but wounded oil company?
……”NO GAME PLAN.” Analysts agreed that Unocal had offered CNOOC an unusual target because of its strategic assets in Southeast Asia. More aware now of the harsh political reaction to any additional attempt to take over U.S. companies — and lacking another stateside target boasting Unocal’s Asian attractions — CNOOC likely will sit on the sidelines for a while and “lick its wounds,” says Oppenheimer analyst Fadel Gheit.
While Unocal and Chevron made final preparation for the Aug. 10 vote at which they are expected to seal their marriage, Gheit and other analysts were busy conducting an autopsy of CNOOC’s first failed attempt at a major U.S. acquisition.
“They had no game plan,” says Gheit. “I don’t know if they had bad advice or did not listen or if the bureaucracy just couldn’t move fast enough. CNOOC is at a disadvantage in a fast-paced market.”