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Reuters: UPDATE 2-Shell shortlists final bidders for LPG unit-source

LONDON, (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell Plc. has shortlisted bidders for its liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) unit, which it plans to sell in two parts, a source close to the talks said on Friday.
Brazilian conglomerate Ultrapar Participacoes (UGPA4.SA: Quote, Profile, Research) and a joint team of private equity firms PAI and Bain have been shortlisted for Shell's UK, French and Benelux LPG assets.
French oil major Total and privately owned Dutch firm SHV, the world's largest LPG distributor, have been shortlisted in the sale of Shell's LPG assets in the rest of the world, the source said.
Final bids for the assets, which analysts said could be worth in total over $2 billion, are due in on Friday and winning buyers may be announced next week, the source added.
Shell declined immediate comment. The firm said last month that it hoped for a sale in the coming months.
The Anglo-Dutch firm originally planned to sell the unit in one part but after failing to achieve an attractive price it decided on a sale in two parts, industry sources said.
Total would have had regulatory problems with buying the French assets while SHV's operations in the UK and Benelux would have also aroused competition issues, bankers said.
The split allowed them to bid more competitively for the assets where there is less overlap.
Total declined to comment. SHV was unavailable for comment.
Spanish oil firm Repsol YPF (REP.MC: Quote, Profile, Research) said in January that it had bid for the LPG assets but is no longer in the process, the source said. A Repsol spokesman declined to comment.
Repsol said previously that it hoped to combine Shell's operations with its already significant LPG business to create a company that it could float.
Analysts said the decision to split the LPG business into two parts would have made it less attractive to Repsol.

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