US oil giant Chevron is seeking to sell its 50% stake in Caltex Australia for A$4.6bn (£2.4bn, €3.3bn $3.6bn), exiting its investment in the petrol station operator.

Chevron, on 27 March, offered its 135 million Caltex shares at $34.20, a 9.7% discount to the closing price of $37.88 on Friday.

The sale was underwritten solely by Goldman Sachs, which by 5pm AEDT had already placed over half the stock with several domestic and international investors, at an average price higher than $34.20, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

The trademark licensing agreement between Chevron and Caltex will continue post the sale, and Chevron said it will continue to ensure reliable supplies of fuel to Caltex, to supply its network of service stations.

Chevron's stock has shed some 7% in New York trade so far this year, while Caltex's stock has gained some 10.61% in Sydney trade this year.

Australian portfolio

Chevron remains one of the largest foreign investors in Australia, through its $54bn Gorgon liquefied natural gas project and its $29bn Wheatstone LNG venture, both under construction in Western Australia.

The American firm also owns a stake in the Woodside Petroleum-managed North West Shelf venture and is the largest holder of gas resources on the continent.

Chevron, like its rivals, has been trimming down its investments in downstream refining and marketing of fuels, to focus on exploration and production, which typically enjoys higher-margins.

Early last year, Royal Dutch Shell sold its refining and marketing business in Australia to Swiss commodities trader Vitol, while BP has streamlined its local downstream business with plans to shut one of two refineries.

The Chevron-Caltex deal beats Shell's $3.2bn and $3.3bn trades in 2014 and 2010 respectively, when it sold its position in Woodside Petroleum.