Glencore puts Chadian oil fields up for sale

Glencore puts Chadian oilfields up for sale

Like its oil trading peers, Glencore expanded in the upstream sector about a decade ago in order to secure oil flows, but the value of the assets tumbled with the oil price slump in late 2014. 

News of the Chad oilfields sale coincides with the retirement of Glencore’s head of oil, Alex Beard at the end of this month and the separation of its upstream oil interests from marketing. 

The main producing fields are Mangara and Badila. 

Related: Chad Suspends Import Taxes on Food

Glencore’s net oil production from the West African country accounted for more than half its net production at 7,700 barrels per day (bpd) out of a total net 12,700 bpd. By comparison, oil majors, BP produces close to 4 million barrels of oil equivalent per day. 

According to Glencore, the assets, up for sale less than a month ago and a data room including drilling and seismic details, had recently been opened.

The sale is being jointly run by U.S. bank, Morgan Stanley and French bank Natixis. 

A spokesman for Glencore declined to comment. Morgan Stanley declined to comment and Natixis did not immediately comment. 

Glencore was started by trader, Marc Rich more than 40 years ago specializing in oil trading. 

Over the past 20 years, it expanded into coal and metals mining but oil production constituted a small part of its business. Oil trading meanwhile, grew to 5 million barrels per day, making Glencore the world’s second-largest oil trader. 

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It entered Chad in 2012 by buying minority stakes in some licenses owned by Calgary-based Caracal Energy and in 2014, the miner acquired the Chad-focused operator for $1.6 billion. 

However, the purchase was ill-timed taking place just months before a major oil price slump and since 2015, Glencore has booked impairments of $1.9 billion on its Chad assets after it scaled back its development program and froze drilling between early 2016 and the second half of 2017. 

In its 2018 report, Glencore says the recoverable value of its Chad assets was $1.2 billion and gross production was around 10,500 barrels per day. In total, Glencore’s upstream gross production was 35,000 bpd. 

Glencore has also booked impairments at its assets in Equatorial Guinea, though partially recovered, and in Cameroon. The company also holds an interest in Russian upstream company Russneft.

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