Home » U.S. firm Vaalco Energy in talks to acquire oil company of Ethiopia’s richest man

U.S. firm Vaalco Energy in talks to acquire oil company of Ethiopia’s richest man

Vaalco Energy eyes acquisition with cash reserves

by Omokolade Ajayi
Mohammed Al-Amoudi

Svenska Petroleum Exploration AB, a Swedish oil and gas company under the ownership of Ethiopia’s richest man, Mohammed Al-Amoudi, is in discussions with Houston-based independent firm Vaalco Energy regarding a potential acquisition deal.

Vaalco Energy, in an official press release, acknowledged ongoing discussions with Svenska’s owner concerning a debt-free corporate transaction.

The focus of the negotiations is Svenska’s substantial 27.39 percent interest in Block CI-40, situated offshore Cote d’Ivoire. Block CI-40 currently yields a working interest production of approximately 4,500 barrels of oil equivalent per day net to Svenska.

Vaalco Energy eyes acquisition with cash reserves

While the financial details of the potential transaction remain undisclosed, Vaalco Energy revealed that the acquisition would be funded through existing cash reserves.

The completion of the deal is contingent upon standard closing procedures, including regulatory clearances. Vaalco emphasized the uncertainty surrounding the outcome, with no guarantee of a final agreement or the completion of the transaction.

This move aligns with Vaalco’s strategic vision to expand its operational footprint and project portfolio. The company has committed to providing timely updates, showcasing a dedication to transparency in corporate dealings.

Mohammed Al-Amoudi eyes portfolio optimization through Svenska’s potential deal

Svenska, fully owned by Petroswede AB, specializes in oil and gas exploration and production, with a primary focus on the Ivory Coast. The company holds licensing acreage covering 7,424 square kilometers, and its 2019 average daily output was approximately 8,037 barrels.

For Mohammed Al-Amoudi, a prominent 77-year-old Ethiopian billionaire, this potential deal represents an opportunity to derive further value from his investments in the oil and gas industry. Al-Amoudi, Ethiopia’s richest individual and one of the world’s wealthiest Black billionaires, has been actively seeking opportunities to optimize his portfolio. 

Since revealing plans to divest his stake in Preem Holding AB in October 2023, his net worth has surged from $5.3 billion to $9.1 billion. Aside from Svenska, Al-Amoudi’s diverse interests include holdings in Preem, Midroc Gold, and Okote Gold.

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