Flotek puts equipment, services businesses on the block

Houston’s Flotek Industries is putting its oilfield equipment and services businesses up for sale so it can focus exclusively on chemistry technology.

Once a traditional oilfield services company, Flotek has increasingly shifted its focus in recent year to chemical fluids used in hydraulic fracturing, called fracking, and oilfield production to extract more oil and natural gas liquids from wells.

Chairman and Chief Executive John Chisholm said Thursday that Flotek discontinued its drilling and production technology businesses and has already attracted potential buyers.

At the end of December, Flotek agreed to sell a small portion of its downhole equipment business to an unnamed buyer.

Flotek last year opened a new Houston research center to help sell its chemical products directly to exploration and production companies, effectively bypassing large services companies that would buy Flotek’s chemical products, bundle them into larger fluid packages and sell them at higher prices.

Flotek’s main “Complex nano-Fluid” technology comes from citrus oil derived from oranges to help oil flow to the surface better from wells.

As such, Flotek also sells citrus oils outside of the energy sector for flavor and fragrance additives.

Flotek has faced resistance from some short sellers who claim the company overstates the effectiveness of its products. A Securities and Exchange Commission into such claims is pending.