Vivo buys Engen business in Kenya, 9 African countries

boda boda

Boda Boda operators queue for fuel at a Vivo outlet, which trades as Shell Petrol Station, on Mbagathi Way. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NMG

Vivo Energy Investments BV, one of the big four oil marketers in Kenya, has acquired South African Engen Oil’s assets in nine African countries including Kenya, solidifying its regional petroleum interests.

The Netherlands-based Vivo Energy — a joint venture between Vitol Group, a Dutch firm, and London-based Helios Investment Partners, an African private investment firm that also owns upstream oil assets in Turkana oilfields — said the deal whose value was undisclosed is subject to regulatory approval.

“Upon completion of this transaction, nine new countries and over 300 Engen-branded service stations will be added to Vivo Energy’s network, taking Vivo Energy’s total presence to over 2,100 service stations, across 24 African markets,” the company said in a statement Monday.

Under the deal, the new markets for Vivo Energy will include DR Congo, Zimbabwe, Réunion, Zambia, Gabon, Rwanda, Mozambique, Tanzania and Malawi. Engen’s Kenya operations (where Vivo Energy already operates) are also part of the transaction.

Engen Holdings will however retain its interest in Engen Petroleum Limited (the South Africa business and refinery) and Engen’s businesses in six other countries including Mauritius, Botswana, Ghana, Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho, which are not part of the transaction. Vivo Energy holds the Shell licence in 16 African markets.

In October this year it was reported to be eyeing an initial public offering on the London Stock Exchange to access new capital for growth on the continent.

READ: Shell completes sale of Africa retail business to Vivo Energy

Vitol owns a 60 per cent stake in Vivo while Helios holds the rest. Vivo entered the Kenyan market in November 2012 after Shell sold 80 per cent of the downstream assets in 14 African countries including Kenya and Uganda for about $1 billion (Sh103 billion).

“In our first six years our shareholders have invested to grow Vivo Energy, increasing our network from around 1,300 to over 1,800 service stations and adding over 400 new and refurbished shops and quick service restaurant offers,” said Vivo Energy CEO Christian Chammas.