President Buhari has announced today that, in his capacity as Minister of Petroleum Resources, he was giving his consent to the acquisition of the entire share capital of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU) by Seplat Energy.
The President’s consent was seen as a surprise by many industry observers, especially after the NNPC Ltd sought to declare a dispute between itself and MPNU in relation to their interpretation of pre-emption rights under their joint-operating agreement (JOA). NNPC had notably received last month an ex-parte order of interim injunction from the State Hight Court of Abuja restraining MPNU from completing the transaction with Seplat Energy.
“Considering the extensive benefits of the transaction to the Nigerian Energy sector and the larger economy, President Muhammadu Buhari has given Ministerial Consent to the deal,” said the Nigerian Presidency in a tweet.
Seplat Energy has announced its cash acquisition of MPNU back in February 2022 for $1.283bn, in what remains one of the top oil & gas deals of the year globally.
By acquiring MPNU, the LSE and NSE-listed independent will take over Exxon Mobil’s entire offshore shallow water business in Nigeria which includes assets that are very rich in natural gas and gas liquids. The acquisition would increase Seplat Energy’s production by a whooping +186% while increasing its total 2P reserves by +89%.
The total portfolio includes a 40% operating ownership of OMLs 67, 68, 70 and 104 and their associated infrastructure. Combined, the assets produced an average of 177,000 boepd gross in 2021 according to NUPRC data. OMLs 67, 68 and 70 form what is known in Nigeria as the “East Area”, where ExxonMobil has executed some of the most successful flaring reduction and valorization projects in the Niger Delta.
Seplat Energy’s stock is already up +15% since the announcement broke out earlier today.
Details on OMLs 67, 68, 70, and 104 are available in the “Projects” section within your Hawilti+ research terminal.