April 17, 2024
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Gabon’s National Oil Company Acquires Assala Energy

Gabon’s national oil company has finalized the acquisition of Assala Energy from Carlyle Group after exercising its right to preempt the sale of the business for $1.3 billion. This decision follows a military coup in Gabon, prompting the national oil firm to assert its preemptive right on the acquisition.

Initially, Maurel & Prom had agreed to acquire Assala Energy for $730 million in August, which included rolling over a $600 million credit facility. However, Gabon’s national oil company intervened in November, superseding the previous deal with Maurel & Prom.

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Carlyle Group confirmed that the terms of the new agreement with Gabon Oil Company remained “materially the same.” The acquisition aligns with Gabon’s efforts to secure and manage its natural resources, thereby bolstering its financial position, according to the office of Gabon’s presidency.

Maurel & Prom’s shares experienced a 0.9% decline following the announcement.

Carlyle’s non-U.S. energy arm, CIEP, initially invested in Assala Energy in 2017, acquiring Shell’s ageing operations in Gabon for $628 million. Gabon, the second-smallest OPEC producer, currently produces approximately 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil.

Assala Energy has significantly increased production in Gabon since the 2017 acquisition, reaching 45,000 bpd, and has expanded its oil and gas reserves by 160% through exploration efforts, as reported by Carlyle last August.

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