Heritage Oil Plc (“Heritage” or the “Company”) (TSX:HOC)(LSE:HOIL), an independent upstream exploration and production company announces that a wholly owned subsidiary has entered into a joint venture agreement with Bayelsa Oil Company Limited (“Bayelsa Oil Company”), owned by the Bayelsa State government, to establish an indigenous Nigerian oil company called Petrobay Energy Limited (“Petrobay”). Through Petrobay, Heritage expects to be a significant contributor to the future development of the oil and gas industry in Nigeria.
- Joint venture, Petrobay, combines Bayelsa Oil Company’s indigenous support from state government and local communities with Heritage’s strong technical track record and access to financial markets
- Heritage will own a 45% equity interest in Petrobay
- Petrobay will look to acquire production, development and exploration assets from international oil companies
- Offices will be established in Yenagoa, the capital of the state of Bayelsa, and employment sourced from local expertise
- The state of Bayelsa is in Southern Nigeria, the core of the Niger Delta, which contains many of the largest crude oil and natural gas deposits in the country
- Through Petrobay, Heritage will seek to gain access to additional producing fields and other licence opportunities in Nigeria both onshore and in shallow water
A wholly owned subsidiary of Heritage has entered into a joint venture agreement to establish Petrobay, an indigenous Nigerian oil company. Heritage will obtain a 45% equity interest in Petrobay which combines Bayelsa Oil Company’s network of longstanding relationships in Nigeria with Heritage’s strong technical track record, diverse geographic expertise and financial capability. A number of upstream assets in the state of Bayelsa and the larger Niger Delta region have been identified and Petrobay will engage in both bilateral and competitive auction processes to acquire these licences.
Petrobay will enable Heritage to build upon its current interests in Nigeria, which is Africa’s largest oil producer and contains the second largest oil reserves in the continent. Heritage’s footprint in Nigeria was established in November 2012 on the completion of the acquisition of a major interest in OML 30 through its interest in Shoreline Natural Resources Limited (“Shoreline”). Shoreline acquired a 45% interest in OML 30 for cash consideration of $850 million, with the National Petroleum Development Company holding the remaining 55% interest. OML 30 is located onshore in the Niger Delta, contains eight producing oil fields and has independently been evaluated to contain gross proved and probable reserves of over 1.1 billion barrels, thereby containing some of the largest onshore oil reserves in the country.
Tony Buckingham, Chief Executive Officer, commented:
“Heritage Oil is honoured to be entering into a commercial strategic alliance with the state of Bayelsa through the joint venture, Petrobay, with Bayelsa Oil Company. Petrobay will be uniquely positioned to acquire and develop hydrocarbon assets in the Niger Delta, where we can bring exploration and production expertise that, harnessed with the energy and aspirations of the people and state of Bayelsa, will generate value and benefits for all stakeholders. Petrobay will develop close relationships with local communities and other stakeholders in the Niger Delta in recognition of the key role their support plays in securing assets and delivering safe, stable and productive operations. This alliance reinforces Heritage’s commitment to a country with huge potential and the Company is well placed to play a significant role in the future oil and gas industry in Nigeria.”
Governor Henry Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State, commented:
“At a time when people are divesting oil assets in this area, no mention is made of our involvement. Today, that era of standing by and non-participation has ended. What we have signed is going to blossom and move from strength to strength and be strong enough to compete favourably with other competitors in the upstream and downstream sectors of the industry. Let me announce to all those stakeholders in the industry that Bayelsa State is ready for active participation in the oil and gas industry.”
More information about the Company is available on the Company’s website at www.heritageoilplc.com.
Notes to Editors
- Heritage is listed on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. The trading symbol is HOIL. Heritage has a further listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: HOC).
- Heritage is an independent upstream exploration and production company engaged in the exploration for, and the development, production and acquisition of, oil and gas internationally.
- Shoreline Natural Resources Limited is a private limited Nigerian company established by Heritage, through a wholly owned subsidiary, and Shoreline Power Company Limited and has a 45% interest in OML 30 with National Petroleum Development Company holding the remaining 55% interest.
- Heritage has producing assets in Nigeria and Russia and exploration assets in Tanzania, Malta, Papua New Guinea, Pakistan and Libya.
- For further information please refer to our website, www.heritageoilplc.com
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Except for statements of historical fact, all statements in this news release – including, without limitation, statements regarding production estimates and future plans and objectives of Heritage – constitute forward-looking information that involve various risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate; actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from anticipated results include risks and uncertainties such as: risks relating to estimates of reserves and recoveries; production and operating cost assumptions; development risks and costs; the risk of commodity price fluctuations; political and regulatory risks; and other risks and uncertainties as disclosed under the heading “Risk Factors” in its Prospectus dated 6 August 2012, as supplemented by a supplementary prospectus dated 23 August 2012, and elsewhere in Heritage documents filed from time-to-time with the London Stock Exchange and other regulatory authorities. Further, any forward-looking information is made only as of a certain date and the Company undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking information or statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement is made or reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as may be required by applicable securities laws. New factors emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for management of the Company to predict all of these factors and to assess in advance the impact of each such factor on the Company’s business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking information.
Heritage Oil Plc
Tony Buckingham, CEO / Paul Atherton, CFO
+44 (0) 1534 835 400
Heritage Oil Plc – Investor Relations
+44 (0) 20 7518 0838
Ben Brewerton / Natalia Erikssen
+44 (0) 20 7831 3113
Cathy Hume / Jeanny So
+1 416 868 1079 x231 / x225
email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org