Drilling South: Petrobras Evaluates Pecom

(w/ R. Reisen de Pinho, M. Veblen and K. Luchs) HBS Case 204-043.

The Brazilian oil company, Petrobras, is evaluating the acquisition of an Argentine oil company, the Perez Companc Group (Pecom). The acquisition would increase Petrobras' oil reserves and expand its interests outside Brazil, a significant step for the largest company in Brazil. Pecom is for sale because it has been severely affected by the financial crisis in Argentina. Students have the opportunity to assess the impact of a severe devaluation on a company. There is also considerable uncertainty about how to value Pecom, and students must weigh the importance of country risk in determining the appropriate discount rate to use in the valuation. Finally, there is also uncertainty about Petrobras's own future as the Brazilian government has controlled it. Students are allowed to review the efficacy of changes in corporate governance implemented by Petrobras, despite its ongoing link to the Brazilian state and the associated political uncertainties of that affiliation.