ExxonMobil Taps Blackrock as Adriatic LNG Suitor
The supermajor plans to sell its majority stake in the Italian offshore terminal as it sheds noncore assets.
ExxonMobil has selected asset manager Blackrock as the acquirer of its 70.7% stake in Adriatic LNG, Italy’s main LNG import terminal, according to Reuters.
The oil giant said in March it would consider selling its majority stake in the offshore terminal as part of its strategy to divest noncore assets.
The sale attracted interest from four international groups: Blackrock, Igneo Infrastructure Partners, German asset manager IKAV, and energy infrastructure group VTTI.
A subsidiary of QatarEnergy (22%) and Italian gas grid operator Snam (7.3%) own the remaining stake in the terminal, located about 15 km off the Veneto coastline.
Snam, which has the first right of refusal should a partner decide to divest, could increase its current stake.
No financial terms of the deal were released. The supermajor is continuing to work on the transaction as a final agreement has not been reached.
Italy aims to boost its LNG imports to offset natural gas volumes it previously received via pipeline from Russia.
Adriatic LNG, the world’s first offshore LNG terminal, arrived at its final location off the Italian coast, in the fall of 2008. The terminal was designed to store and regasify LNG to deliver 775 MMcf/D of natural gas at full operational capacity. Gas is moved from the terminal to shore via a 30-in. pipeline.
The terminal receives natural gas produced from Qatar’s North Field, which has resources of more than 900 Tcf, making it the largest nonassociated natural gas field in the world.