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First Reserve celebrates 30 years of global energy investing

Former owner of BORCO continues global reach in energy investments through offices in Greenwich CT, Houston TX, London and Hong Kong. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013
Thursday, February 14, 2013

William “Bill” Macaulay and John Hill

Pictured: William Macaulay (left) and John Hill co-founded First Reserve in 1983. (Photo source: www.firstreserve.com)

GREENWICH, Conn., HOUSTON, LONDON, and HONG KONG, Feb. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — First Reserve today announced that it is celebrating its thirtieth year in global energy investing, making it the oldest and largest global private equity firm exclusively focused on energy.

Having begun their careers in energy investing in the early 1970s, William “Bill” Macaulay and John Hill co-founded First Reserve in 1983 with the takeover of several distressed private energy funds. Since that time, the Firm has raised more than USD $23 billion of aggregate capital since inception and now maintains the largest energy-focused private equity investment team in the industry. Its 41 active portfolio companies in the Buyout Funds and Infrastructure Fund trade on five market exchanges and operate in approximately 50 countries.

“Back when John and I founded First Reserve, the energy industry was in disarray and there was little institutional interest in oil and gas investments,” said First Reserve Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder Bill Macaulay . “The opportunity set began to change dramatically in the 1990s with a wave of worldwide industry consolidation. We were able to capitalize on this market transformation by leveraging our strategy of building value by building companies, while maintaining our focus on helping investors to reach their goals.”

The Firm’s initial focus was primarily on Exploration and Production (E&P) companies in the United States. It went on to leverage its E&P expertise internationally, and to invest across the energy value chain, including Equipment and Services (E&S).

National Oilwell Varco is one of the worldwide leaders in E&S and was a First Reserve portfolio company from 1996 – 2001. Pete Miller, President and CEO of National Oilwell Varco, said, “First Reserve represented a strategic advantage for us as a private equity partner and I believe they played a key role in where we are today. The team brought more than capital to the table; their knowledge and relationships played an important part in shaping our growth strategy and accelerating our consolidation of the offshore equipment and services industry that began in the late 1990s and continues on today.”

In addition to E&P and E&S, First Reserve invests in the midstream/downstream and energy infrastructure sectors, among others. Its investments have included Bahamas Oil Refining Company International Limited (BORCO), sold to Buckeye Partners in 2011, and PBF Energy that went public on the New York Stock Exchange in December 2012.

Complementing First Reserve’s sector strategy is an enduring network of industry relationships that the Firm has cultivated worldwide, ranging from regional companies to national and international oil majors. Leveraging this network, 85 percent of the current active investments of the Buyout Funds and the Infrastructure Fund were sourced in a proprietary manner as of December 31, 2012. The Firm also utilizes its relationships to back proven management teams in repeated transactions. For example, Deep Gulf I and Deep Gulf II.

GE Chairman and CEO Jeffrey R. Immelt commented, “At GE, we’ve bought companies from First Reserve, sold assets to them, and partnered together on new ventures for almost 30 years. The integrity of the team, depth and breadth of their industry knowledge, and global reach, consistently delivers strategic value to our business.”

As vehicles for growth, First Reserve’s portfolio companies are also job creators. The Firm’s active controlled portfolio companies employed approximately 40,000 people worldwide as of September 30, 2012, including 22 percent of employees covered by collective bargaining agreements. The number of employees at these companies has grown by nearly 14,000 since the companies were acquired by First Reserve.

Concluded John Hill , Vice Chairman and Co-Founder of First Reserve, “I am proud of what we have accomplished together with our investors, portfolio companies and strategic partners. I believe that our unique experience in understanding and capitalizing on interdependent and cyclical energy trends for 30 years has served us well and will continue to guide us forward through the next thirty years and beyond.”

About First Reserve
Since 1983, First Reserve has focused exclusively on energy investing; helping shape tomorrow’s industry leaders while remaining committed to supporting investors in reaching their goals. With 30 years of industry insight, investment expertise and operational excellence, the Firm has cultivated an enduring network of global relationships and raised more than USD $23 billion of aggregate capital since inception, putting both to work to complete more than 450 transactions (including platform investments and add-on acquisitions) on six continents. Today, First Reserve has the largest energy‑focused private equity investment team in the industry. Its portfolio of companies operate in approximately 50 countries and span the energy spectrum, including natural resources, equipment and services, midstream / downstream and infrastructure, among others. First Reserve is headquartered in Greenwich CT with offices in Houston, London and Hong Kong. Visit us at www.firstreserve.com for more information.

The pristine beaches of The Bahamas attracted more than your average share of visitors in 2012. In December, The Exumas served as one of the key locations for the highly anticipated Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2013, which hit newsstands February 12.

Secretary-General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Ambassador Irwin LaRocque is paying an official visit to The Bahamas February 13-15.

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