Afreximbank Supports Nigerian Firm with $250m to Acquire 45% Stake in OML 17

The African Export–Import Bank (Afreximbank) has disbursed $250 million as part of its support for Trans Niger Oil and Gas Ltd (TNOG) to acquire 45 per cent stake in Oil Mining Lease (OML) 17 onshore oilfield.

The NNPC holds 55 per cent equity in the Lease.

The disbursement is about a quarter of the financing required to enable TNOG to buy stakes in the Lease from Shell Petroleum Development Company, Total E&P Nigeria Ltd. and ENI (AGIP).

The total support package from Afreximbank is $1.1 billion it said in a statement issued in Cairo on Thursday.

It noted that with the $250 million Reserve Based Lending (RBL) facility, Afreximbank was the largest lender in the acquisition process.

Other participating lenders are Africa Finance Corporation, Union Bank, Shell, Hybrid Capital and Schlumberger, with United Capital Plc. advising TNOG.

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“The five-year 1.1 billion dollar facility, which was signed in December 2020, in spite of the economic headwinds caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, was led by Afreximbank as Mandated Lead Arrangers.

“Others are Standard Chartered Bank and Amalgamated Banks of South Africa.

“Following this acquisition, TNOG will now operate the OML 17 onshore oilfield on behalf of the NNPC,’’ it stated.

Prof. Benedict Oramah, Afreximbank President, said in the statement that: “the transaction further underscores the bank’s commitment to ensuring that indigenous African companies were able to play a more dominant role in the operations of specialised oil and gas assets in an industry dominated by international oil companies.

“TNOG as the Operator of OML 17 will invest in an accelerated production ramp up thereby boosting foreign exchange earnings and employing more Africans.

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“This resonates with our mandate and we congratulate Heirs Holdings for keeping the African flag flying,’’ he said.

The statement quoted Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings, to have said that the transaction was a testament to the opportunities that abound in Nigeria.

TNOG is a sister company of Heirs Holdings Ltd. and Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc

Elumelu added that the acquisition of OML 17 significantly advanced Heirs Holdings’ strategic vision of creating Africa’s leading integrated energy company.

“We are building a business that will ensure that African natural resources drive African power networks and ensure that value creation occurs in Africa.

“I would like to take the opportunity to thank Afreximbank, and President Oramah for their strong support and shared vision of the transaction,’’ Elumelu was also quoted to have said.

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The statement added that Afreximbank remained a key financier of the African oil and gas industry through RBLs and Pre-Export Finance structures in Nigeria, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Senegal, Republic of Congo, Angola and South Sudan.

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