The Dubai-based oil services firm NPS Energy, which tried to sell itself to Norway’s Aker Solutions last year, has once again initiated a sale process to find a buyer, hoping to fetch up to US$700 million, sources aware of the matter said.

Aker agreed to buy NPS Energy for about $460m in May last year, including $110m in debt, but the deal collapsed in November after the two parties failed to reach a final agreement.

A formal sale process for the business was initiated earlier this year, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity as the matter was not public.

NPS Energy is part of National Petroleum Services, which was formed in 2004 from the merger of oilfield businesses owned by two large family-owned groups in Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Demand for oilfield services in the Middle East, the world’s top oil-producing region, has increased rapidly in the past few years.

NPS Energy has appointed HSBC as a financial adviser for the transaction, according to the sources.

A spokesman for NPS Energy was not immediately available for comment. Adnan Ghabris, the firm’s chief executive, did not reply to an email seeking comment. A spokesman for HSBC in Dubai declined to comment.