The deal has been in the air for a few days now. Time is running out a bit compared to the announcement by Eugene Manyakin, general manager of Lukoil-controlled Isab headquartered in Priolo in the Syracuse industrial park, in24 hours only. Not by the end of 2022 but only in a few days. In the end, in fact, the announcement was made today, Monday, January 9: Litasco controlled by the all-Russian Lukoil and owner Isab has reached an agreement to sell the Sicilian plants with Goi Energy, the energy sector subsidiary of the Argus New Energy Fund, the private equity fund and asset management company in Cyprus.
«We are pleased to announce that we have reached an agreement with Litasco – says Michael Bobrov, CEO of Goi Energy -. We fully understand the importance of Isab to the Italian economy, to Sicily and to the local community. We firmly believe that Isab has great development potential and we have a solid business plan in place to be able to exploit it. And in close cooperation with the Italian government, we are optimistic that the operation will end successfully.” Bobrov is also the CEO and majority shareholder of Green Oil Energy, which in turn is the majority shareholder of the Bazan Group, one of the largest and most complex energy groups in Israel, which operates the largest integrated refinery and petrochemicals in the country.
It will close at the end of March
As both companies have indicated in a note, this is a transaction subject to the occurrence of certain prior conditions relating, among other things, to obtaining authorizations from all relevant authorities, including the Italian government: the transaction is expected to close by the end of March 2023. As part of this transaction, Goi Energy has agreed exclusive long-term supply and purchase agreements with Trafigura, one of the world’s largest independent traders of oil and petroleum products. The agreements will ensure a safe supply of oil to the refinery and a guaranteed supply of refined products, in addition to supporting the working capital needs of the refinery. Among the things emphasized in both press releases was the following: “The new owner will retain jobs and ensure health and safety conditions.” As part of the deal, Bonelli Erede acted as legal advisor to Goi Energy, while Ernst & Young acted as financial advisor.
I work for 3,000 people, including related industries
The Isab refinery in Priolo, which Litasco bought a few years ago from the Erg Group, processes (today) 10.6 million tons (on average) of refined crude oil per year (13.6% of the national total) but with a refining capacity that, according to data recorded by Unem, reaches 19.4 million tons of crude oil annually, just over 22.2% of the national total. Isab, which employs about three thousand people (one thousand direct) combines refining, gasification and cogeneration plants and consists of three interconnected production sites.
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