Private equity fund HitecVision AS and its British unit Neo Energy have entered exclusive negotiations to buy Exxon Mobil Corp.’s upstream assets in the central and northern North Sea, Hitec said on Jan. 21.
Bids for Exxon Mobil's British North Sea oil and gas fields, which were expected to fetch about $1 billion, were due on Oct. 28, two sources with knowledge of the process told Reuters last September.
"HitecVision/NEO Energy have entered exclusive negotiations to purchase Exxon Mobil’s upstream assets in the central and northern North Sea, which, if successful, are expected to result in a signed sales agreement in the first quarter, with close later in the year," it said.
HitecVision, via a partnership with Eni SpA, bought Exxon's Norwegian North Sea assets for $4.5 billion in 2019.
Most of Exxon Mobil's British operations are managed through Esso Exploration and Production UK Ltd., a 50:50 joint venture with Royal Dutch Shell Plc.
The portfolio under discussion under the October deadline, which excludes assets in the southern North Sea, produces around 35,000 boe/d, which is expected to increase to just under 60,000 boe/d by around 2023, the sources said.
Initially, Exxon Mobil hoped to raise more than $2 billion from the sale and it was planned for late 2019. In June 2020, sources told Reuters the portfolio was more likely to fetch $1 billion to $1.5 billion given the oil price weakness last year.
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