24 May 2014, Lagos – The Federal Government’s effort to boost local content in the oil and gas industry by giving indigenous companies access to larger acreages has received a boost as Aiteo Consortium is set to close deal with Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) on Oil Mining Lease (OML) 29.
Aiteo, Taleveras and other members of the consortium clinched OML 29, the largest oil block among the four blocks offered to prospective reputable investors by SPDC.
These two Nigerian companies and their partners, it was learnt, made the highest bid of $2.85 billion to defeat other reputable indigenous giants in the highly-competitive and transparent bid, which was said to have followed global best practices.
When concluded, it would be the biggest single ticket transaction by an indigenous company in Nigeria ever. Other members of the consortium include Tempo Energy, Energy South, AGR, and IS45.
THISDAY gathered that a minimum of five banks are involved in the deal and “these banks are positive about the transaction and are currently in the process of finalising to commence operations.
“The deal is in the final stage of closure. Financial advisers and lenders advisers have preparing reports for a close for operations to commence,” said a source familiar with the transaction.
Aiteo is one of Africa’s fastest-growing integrated energy group, with the experience and assets necessary to provide oil and gas on a regional and global scale.
Founded by the Peters brothers, Benedict and Francis, Aiteo is strategically focused on exploration and production; bulk petroleum storage; refining of petroleum products; trading, marketing and supply as well as power generation and distribution.
Founded in 1999, the company operated under the name Sigmund Communnecci Limited before it changed to Aiteo during a rebranding exercise. According to the company, the new brand signifies not only a change in name but a change in culture and strategy to propel the company to new heights.
Promoted by Mr. Igho Sanomi, the Taleveras Group was incorporated as a parent company in 2004, by merger of various segments of the company’s businesses.
The company is a fully integrated company offering strategic solutions in energy, power and construction Services.
Shell is divesting its 30 percent stake, with Total and Eni also set to sell their 10 percent and five percent interest in four Nigerian oil blocks –Oil Mining Leases (OMLs) 18, 24, 25 and 29.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) is retaining ownership of the remaining 55 percent in each of the four leases.
The divestments by SPDC were part of the oil giant’s plan to dispose of $15 billion of assets globally in 2014 and 2015.
Before the current sale of big acreages to indigenous operators by the International Oil Companies (IOCs), Nigerian indigenous companies were restricted to marginal assets.
Dangote/Dansa, Midwestern/Mart/Notore and Sahara Consortium submitted bids for OML 18; Vertex/Seplat/Maurel & Prom/VP Global, Glencore/Neconde, Transcorp, Aiteo/Taleveras battled for OML 29, while Lekoil, Crestar, GreenAcres/CCC/Signet Petroleum, NDPR/SAPETRO and Essar submitted bids for OML-25.