Lime gets go-ahead for North Sea field acquisition as Repsol heads out

Norwegian player gets go-ahead to buy North Sea field stake from Repsol

Norwegian Lime Petroleum, a subsidiary of Singapore’s Rex International, has received approval from the authorities for the acquisition of Repsol’s interest in the Brage field, located off Norway.

Brage platform; Credit: Wintershall Dea/Morten Berentsen

Originally, Lime Petroleum entered into a conditional sale and purchase agreement with Repsol Norge in June 2021 to acquire its 33.8434 per cent interests in the oil, gas and natural gas liquids (NGL) producing Brage field, and the five licences on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS) over which the Brage field straddles for a post-tax consideration of $42.6 million.

A month later, Lime Petroleum completed the issuance of NOK 500 million (approximately $60 million) of 2.5-year senior secured bonds, a portion of which would be used to partly finance this acquisition. According to Rex, the bonds were oversubscribed by more than 100 per cent and books were closed within three days.

Rex International announced on Wednesday that its 90 per cent subsidiary Lime Petroleum on 14 December received approval from the Norwegian authorities for its acquisition of 33.8434 per cent of the Brage field.

As previously reported, the acquisition of the Wintershall Dea-operated Brage field fulfils Lime Petroleum’s ambition to transition from pure-play exploration to a full-cycle exploration and production company on the NCS.

Lars Hübert, Chief Executive Officer of Lime, commented: “We are delighted to have the consent of the Norwegian Government for the transaction with Repsol Norge on the Brage field. Adding Brage to the Lime portfolio alongside the ongoing development projects and exploration concessions is a large step in transforming Lime to a full cycle exploration and production (E&P) company.”

The company says that the acquisition is expected to be completed by 31 December 2021. Upon completion, the effective date of the acquisition will be deemed to have taken place on 1 January 2021, as is the norm for transactions in the NCS.  

“Lime has spent the interim period building up the organisation necessary to take on the responsibility of having this stake in a producing field and is looking forward to working closely with the operator, Wintershall Dea Norge, and the other partners on the field,” concluded Hübert.

Brage platform
Brage platform; Courtesy of Wintershall Dea/Morten Berentsen

Located in the northern part of the North Sea, 10 kilometres east of the Oseberg field, the Brage field lies in a water depth of 140 metres. Production at the field started in 1993. The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate believes there are 3.42 million Sm3 of oil equivalent or 21.52mmboe of remaining reserves in the field.

In recent news, Lime Petroleum secured a deal with Nautilus Carbon Services to take part in a carbon capture and storage project in Norway, involving several other joint-industry project partners.

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Rex claims that this project is in line with the global goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, as the net-zero 2050 roadmap describes how a rapid increase in CO2 capture requires the development of geological storage locations.