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Imperial Energy Facts

Photo Credit :

(Photo courtesy company website)

M&A News: ONGC Videsh Ltd (OVL) has won the bid to take over UK-listed. Russia-focussed Imperial Energy for £1.4 billion, outsmarting rivals such as China Petroleum and Chemical Corp (Sinopec) and Korean National Oil Company.
Advantage OVL: The all-cash deal will enable OVL to tap Siberian deposits.
Deal details: The offer values Imperial Energy at approximately £1.4 billion and is pitched at 1,250 pence per share.
Bankers: Deutsche Bank advised ONGV Videsh and Merrill Lynch advised Imperial.
Imperial Energy Corp Plc Facts
Executive Chairman: Peter Michael Levine.
Levine, aged 52, founded Imperial in 2004 and is the largest individual shareholder of the group. He was appointed CEO (till 2007) and chairman on the formation of the company in 2004. He was formerly the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Kazakhstan in the UK and joint chairman of the British-Kazakh Society. Levine is expected to net around £100 million from the sale from his 6.1 per cent stake in the company.
CEO: Simon Christopher Hopkinson (41) was appointed to the board in December 2006 and appointed group chief executive officer in April 2007. Hopkinson worked with Shell for 13 years and later worked for Yukos EP for four years, where he was head of development on new wells. He also worked with Lukoil Overseas where he was director of global projects and asset management.
Company details: The company website says, "Imperial Energy is an independent upstream oil exploration and production company focused on the Commonwealth of Independent States and, in particular, the Russian Federation. Imperial Energy is listed on the Official List of the London Stock Exchange".
Backgrounder: News reports point out that in 2007, Imperial Energy was accused of infringing rules to protect forests, while laying a pipeline. Oleg Mitvol, deputy head of Rosprirodnadzor, Russia's environmental protection agency, accused Imperial of violating license obligations by certain subsidiaries of the company and of inflating reserves data. These accusations which began in April 2007 saw three-month negative trend in the share value of the company.

Capacity: Imperial Energy produced about 10,000 barrels of oil per day in December 2007 and is aiming to raise this amount to 80,000 barrels per day by end-2011. Imperial has oil producing blocks in the Tomsk region of western Siberia in Russia and Kastanai in north-central Kazakhstan. According to the UK-based firm’s website, it has about 920 million barrels oil equivalent of proven and probable reserves at the end of 2007.
Listing: Moved to the Official List of the London Stock Exchange in May 2007; Entered FTSE 250 Index in November 2007
Revenue (2007): $20 million (2006: $3.1 million)
Opinion: "This is a good price, given consideration for the current softening in oil prices, the turbulence on global stock markets and the geopolitical stage," brokerage Daniel Steward has said in a research note.
Trivia: The company website says Imperial has a 75 per cent interest in Sevkazgra, a limited liability partnership registered in Kazakhstan, which holds a license over 2,022 sq. km of exploration area in North Central Kazakhstan known as the Torgai Block.
Trivia: Last month, Imperial reported it had received a 1,290 pence/share approach from an unnamed bidder, which sources familiar with the matter identified as ONGC. A subsequent approach from another party, which sources identified as Sinopec, sparked hopes of a bid battle.
OVL's Russia Ties: OVL already has a presence in Russia through its 20 percent stake in the Exxon Mobil-led Sakhalin-1 oil and gas project, which is currently locked in a dispute with the Kremlin. Moscow is blocking the consortium from exporting gas while Exxon says its contract allows this.

ONGC Videsh Limited Facts
Company Profile: ONGC Videsh Limited (OVL) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC). It was incorporated as Hydrocarbons India Private Limited on 5 March 1965 for the business of international exploration and production and was changed to ONGC Videsh Limited on 15 June 1989. OVL today is the second largest exploration and production company in India by reserves, second only to ONGC. At the moment, OVL has 38 oil and gas projects in 18 countries.
Company Aim: The website says, "By 2025, contribute 60 MMTPA of equity oil and gas."
Achievements: OVL registered a production growth of 11%, up from 7.952 million tonnes (MMT) of oil and oil equivalent gas (MMTOE) in 2006-07 to 8.802 MMTOE in 2007-08.
Dates To Remember:
September 2000: The Sakhalin-1 Project (Sakhalin Island) completed drilling and testing of the Chayvo 6 well, the last well of a five-year exploration period. The exploration period included drilling of seven appraisal wells and acquisition of more than 1,200 sq. km of three-dimensional seismic data. The Sakhalin-1 project includes three offshore fields -- Chayvo, Odoptu, and Arkutun Dagi.
2002: OVL secured the bid and has finalised the draft Exploration Service Contract with the National Iranian Oil Company of Iran, for the Farsi offshore Block (Persian Gulf) with the signing of a four-year exploration contract with The National Iranian Oil Corporation. The partners and their participating interest in this exploration project are -- OVL 40% (Operator), IOC 40% and OIL 20%.
March 2003: OVL acquired a 25 per cent stake in the Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Company (GNPOC), which operates blocks 1, 2, and 4. OVL purchased its stake from Canada's Talisman Inc. for around $700 million, a record foreign investment among Indian corporations.
January 2004: OVL has 20 per cent interest in offshore Block A-1 of Myanmar. The block A-1 extends over an area of about 3885 sq. km. off Myanmar's Rakhine Coast, close to Bangladesh. The block is about 75-100 km from the shore and has a water depth of less than 50m in NE and up to 1000m in SW.
May 2004: OVL acquired stakes in two more oil blocks in Sudan — a 25 per cent stake in block 5A and a 23.5 per cent stake in block 5B, both purchased from Austria's OMV Aktiengesellschaft for approximately $134.6 million. Both blocks are operated by the White Nile Petroleum Company consortium (WNPOC). In 2004, the company was awarded a contract to build a 741 km pipeline connecting the Khartoum refinery to Sudan's main export terminal in Port Sudan. Completed in August 2005, the pipeline has a capacity of 18,330 bbl/d.
August, 2004: Reached an agreement with Antrim Energy Inc, Canada to acquire majority interest in an exploratory block, Offshore Australia
March, 2005: Won the prospective Najwat Najem Oil acreage, located in the Arabian Gulf in Offshore Qatar.
December 2005: OVL built a 741-km-long multi product pipeline in Sudan.
September 2006: Entered into a Production-Sharing-Contract with CUPET, the state oil company of the Republic of Cuba, for two offshore exploration blocks N-34 and N-35
February 2007: OVL and Russia's Gazprom agreed to expand mutual co-operation in hydrocarbon and power sector. This new chapter holds the prospect of a stake for India in Russia's vast oil and gas reserves, and a role for Russia in India's downstream petroleum sector.
October 2007: ONGC Mittal Energy Ltd (OMEL), a joint venture between OVL and Mittal Investment Sarl (MIS), acquired 30 per cent participating interest (PI) in an exploratory block 11-12, Offshore Turkmenistan in the Caspian Sea.
November 2007: OVL bagged two blocks in Brazil. Deepwater block 470 in the highly prospective Espirito Santo basin and shallow water block 1413 in another highly prospective Santos Basin.
July 2008: Shortlisted to qualify as an operator for the deepwater blocks by the Angolan authorities.
2008: Earlier this year, ONGC Videsh's offer to barter gas from its stake in Russia's Sakhalin-1 block with Japan's West Asia gas imports (since West Asia is closer to India than Japan) was turned down by Russia because it wants to secure the country's energy assets under state control.
When ONGC Videsh tried to buy a 25 per cent stake in Sudan's Greater Nile project by acquiring Canada-based Talisman's shares, China's National Petroleum, which held 40 per cent, raised an objection. India inked the $721-million deal in 2003 after hectic diplomatic parleys that even involved the Prime Minister.
Important Oil Acronyms:
BOPD: Barrels of oil per day
BOE: Barrel of oil equivalent
BOED: Barrel of oil equivalent per day
MMBOE: Million barrels of oil equivalent
MMBbls: A million barrels
MBbls: A thousand barrels
MMTPA: million metric tonne per annum
(Compiled by Alokita Datta)

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