Australia’s Woodside Energy and BHP have completed the merger of Woodside with BHP’s oil and gas portfolio to create a global energy company.

Woodside chief executive Meg O’Neill said completion of the merger was one of the most significant events in Woodside’s 67-year history and marked the start of a new chapter for the company.

“Today, Woodside begins its journey as a global company, becoming a bigger supplier of the energy that the world needs right now and will continue to demand in the future,” she said.

“The merger delivers a diverse portfolio of quality operating assets, plus a suite of growth opportunities across oil, gas and new energy that promises ongoing value for our shareholders.”

Woodside has acquired the entire share capital of BHP Petroleum International (BHPP) and issued 914,768,948 new Woodside shares to BHP, which BHP will distribute to its eligible shareholders.

Woodside will receive net cash of approximately US$1 billion, which includes the cash remaining in the BHPP bank accounts immediately before completion.

This reflects US$1.8 billion of net cash flows generated by BHPP between the effective date of 1 July 2021 and completion, less US$800 million representing BHP’s entitlement to cash dividends paid by Woodside over the same period.

All completion payment entitlements are subject to a customary post-completion review which may result in an adjustment.

As a result of the merger, Woodside is a top 10 global independent energy company by hydrocarbon production and the largest energy company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).

Woodside on Wednesday said the larger, more diversified portfolio is expected to deliver significant cash flow to help fund committed projects, its participation in the energy transition and shareholder returns.

Woodside added that it has commenced activities to integrate the two organisations, including standardisation of reporting across all jurisdictions.

The updated production guidance, reserves position and other related information will be released in due course.

Shared vision for the future

“We believe the completion of the merger will enable Woodside to play a more significant role in the energy transition that is imperative as we respond to climate change while ensuring reliable and affordable supplies of energy to a growing and aspirational global population,” added O’Neill.

“The merger combines the best of our two organisations, providing the leadership and technical expertise necessary to help Woodside thrive in a dynamic and competitive industry.

“We are focused on unlocking pre-tax annual synergies of more than (US)$400 million as we merge the two businesses. It is exciting to welcome the BHP Petroleum team to Woodside Energy and start delivering on our shared vision for the future,” she said.

The Australian company’s net profit after tax for the first half of 2022 will incorporate the contribution of the BHPP portfolio from completion and the accounting treatment of the BHPP portfolio will align with Woodside’s policies.

The new Woodside shares are expected to commence trading on the ASX on 2 June 2022. Trading of Woodside American Depositary Shares on the New York Stock Exchange is also expected to start on the same day.

Trading of Woodside shares on the Main Market for listed securities of the London Stock Exchange is expected to commence on 6 June .