Shell considered a takeover of BP during the Gulf of Mexico oil spill crisis and may still be thinking about a merger with their rival, according to the Daily Mail.
The original deal was nixed by Shell themselves, who thought legal issues around the oil spill could be a threat to future profits.
The future of a Shell offer for BP remains in doubt, and the Daily Mail reports that Shell would only step in if another firm tabled a bid for BP.
The combined company would have a market cap of nearly $350 billion (that’s $25 billion less than Exxon Mobil).
BP shares are up over 5% in London on the news, so watch for a similar move in the U.S. ADR today.