SacOil Holdings receives first returns of capital from OPL 233 exit
SacOil Holdings Limited today announced the receipt of US$10 million from Ecobank, associated with the cash collateral that secured the performance bond on Oil Prospecting License (OPL) 233 in the Niger Delta region, Nigeria. SacOil entered into a farm-in agreement with Nigdel United Oil Company (Nigdel) and Energy Equity Resources Norway Limited (EERNL) in November 2010 under which SacOil and EERNL agreed to assist Nigdel in the procurement of the Performance Bond as required under a profit-sharing contract.
The cash collateral was originally paid as part of SacOil’s obligations towards posting the bond in April 2013. This performance bond has expired on 2 May 2015 and SacOil has since announced the Company’s withdrawal from the joint venture as part of its new strategy to balance and rationalise its portfolio of assets. The Company said in an earlier statement that its withdrawal from OPL 233 improves the Company’s financial position and will reduce future financial exposure emanating from such higher risk assets.
Dr Thabo Kgogo, Chief Executive Officer of SacOil made it clear that the exit from OPL 233 was just one element of the Company’s new strategy which includes a proactive acquisition and investment strategy concentrated on income-producing assets. Dr Kgogo comments that despite his company’s exit from OPL 233,
Nigeria will continue to be an area of focus for SacOil. He adds that â€œthere is no doubt about the country’s proven potential as a lucrative oil-producing region, so we will continue to evaluate other low cost producing and development opportunities across the continent, including Nigeria.
The refund received by SacOil on 5 June 2015 sets the stage for the full recovery of their investment in the prospecting license over the following months, effectively validating the Company’s successful exit from the high-risk venture.
“This represents a positive step towards returning value to our shareholders and is in line with our strategy to ensure that SacOil has a strong cash position to fund its future growth ambitions”, says Kgogo.
Source: Energy Watch Africa
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