Shell and Exxon Mobil are seeking bids from potential firms for their gas assets in the southern UK and Dutch North Sea, reported Reuters, citing three industry and banking sources.

The two energy firms have simultaneously initiated the sale process for a large package of offshore natural gas assets earlier this month.

As part of the divestment plan, investment bank Jefferies has been selected to run the sale process. A potential transaction could earn more than $2bn, the sources said.

The divestments form part of the efforts of Shell and Exxon to focus on newer, larger projects around the world by offloading ageing oil and gas assets and reducing costs.

The sale comes after the initial sale processes launched by Shell and Exxon for their Dutch and UK assets.

In July 2022, Reuters reported that Shell and Exxon put their 50-50 Dutch natural gas producing joint venture (JV), NAM, up for sale to benefit from the growing global energy prices.

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A potential sale could value the JV at up to $1.5bn.

NAM separately initiated the sale of the NAM offshore assets while the divestment of the Southern North Sea and offshore NAM assets were planned separately.

Shell and Exxon are also considering selling their stakes in their UK southern North Sea gas hub, comprising the Clipper Leman Alpha hubs, as well as the Bacton terminal in England, according to the sources.

In a separate development in the North Sea, ONE-Dyas and its partners EBN and Hansa Hydrocarbons have decided to move ahead with the development of the N05-A gas field offshore the Netherlands.

The decision involves a €500m investment in the N05-A project, an offshore gas production platform proposed to be developed approximately 20km north of the Borkum, Rottumerplaat, and Schiermonnikoog islands in the Dutch North Sea.