* Actis to invest S$142 mln for 44.4 pct of joint venture
* KS Energy to take private Aqua-Terra and SSH Corp
* Joint venture may acquire other regional oil services firms (Adds details, background)
SINGAPORE - Private equity firm Actis and Singapore oil services firm KS Energy on Tuesday announced plans for a joint venture that will distribute parts and equipment to oil companies in Asia and the Middle East.
The deal, which values the joint venture at S$320 million ($231 million), will involve Actis investing S$142 million in cash and and KS Energy taking private two Singapore-listed units and injecting them into the venture.
KS Energy, which is controlled by Kris Wiluan, Indonesia's 40th richest businessmen according to Forbes magazine, will also transfer some of its directly owned businesses to the joint venture.
Following the consolidation of the businesses, Actis will own 44.4 percent of the joint venture called KS Distribution, while KS Energy will control 55 percent.
We are very positive about the global oil and gas story, Actis partner and Southeast Asia head Gary Addison told a media briefing in Singapore. The easy oil is gone and the costs associated with finding the more difficult oil has to be higher.
Addison also said it was part of the KS Energy-Actis joint venture's medium-term strategy to grow the business through acquisitions, when asked if Actis was still keen to buy other oil services companies.
Actis had earlier this year sought to buy a controlling stake in Franklin Offshore International, an oil services firm that had been put on the block by UK private equity firm 3i The sale was subsequently scrapped. [ID:nHKG375108]
KS Energy will pay S$0.37375 for each share of oilfield equipment supplier Aqua-Terra Supply through a mix of cash and new shares, valuing the firm at a premium of 29 percent over the last traded price.
Its bid of S$0.275 per share for industrial materials firm SSH Corp translates into a premium of 15 percent over the last traded price.
Actis, a private equity firm which has its head office in London, specialises in emerging markets and has about $4.8 billion in assets under management.
The investment in KS Distribution will be through its Actis Emerging Markets 3 fund, which closed in December 2008 with commitments totalling $2.9 billion. (Editing by Neil Chatterjee and Lincoln Feast)