Afreximbank Disburses $250m in Support of TNOG’s OML 17 Acquisition

Peter Uzoho

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has disbursed $250 million of the $1.1 billion in support of the acquisition of 45 per cent stake in Oil Mining Licence (OML 17) onshore oilfield by Trans Niger Oil and Gas Limited (TNOG).

Afreximbank announced this in a statement issued yesterday from its headquarters in Cairo, Egypt.

With the $250-million Reserve Based Lending facility, Afreximbank was the largest lender, underwriting about a quarter of the financing that enabled TNOG to buy stakes in OML 17 from Shell Petroleum Development Company, Total Exploration and Production Nigeria Limited and ENI.

Other participating lenders include: Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), Union Bank, Shell, Hybrid Capital and Schlumberger, with TNOG advised by United Capital Plc.

The five-year $1.1 billion facility, which was signed in December 2020, despite the economic headwinds caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, was led, as Mandated Lead Arrangers, by Afreximbank, Standard Chartered Bank and ABSA.

Following the acquisition, TNOG will now operate the OML 17 onshore oilfield on behalf of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), which owns the remaining 55 per cent working interest.

Professor Benedict Oramah, President of Afreximbank, said:

The statement quoted the President of Afreximbank, Oramah, as saying that “This transaction further underscores Afreximbank’s commitment to ensuring that indigenous African companies are able to play a more dominant role in the operations of specialized oil and gas assets in an industry hitherto dominated by the International Oil Companies”.

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

“This resonates with our mandate. We congratulate Heirs Holdings for keeping the Africa flag flying.”

Also, the Chairman of Heirs Holdings, the parent company of TNOG, Mr. Tony Elumelu, said in the statement that the transaction was a testament of the opportunity in Nigeria.

“The transaction is a testament to the opportunity in Nigeria. Our acquisition of OML 17 and important related assets, significantly advances 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 value creation occurs in Africa,” Elumelu said.

He thanked Oramah and Afreximbank for their strong support and the shared vision of the transaction.

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