News

Eroton Successful Refinancing

08 January 2019

Eroton Successfully Refinances OML 18 Reserves Based Lending Facility (“RBL”)

San Leon Energy plc, the AIM-listed company focused on oil and gas development and appraisal in Africa, is pleased to provide an update with regards to the OML 18 reserves-based lending (“RBL”) facility held by Eroton Exploration and Production Company Limited (“Eroton”), the operator of OML 18.

The Company first highlighted on 7 September 2017, and subsequently since, that depositing three future quarterly RBL repayments into a specified Debt Service Reserve Account (“DSRA”) was one of the conditions needing to be satisfied before the RBL lenders would allow a distribution of dividends from Eroton to its shareholders (of which the Company is an indirect shareholder).

The Company has now been informed by Eroton that the RBL has been successfully refinanced. With a final repayment of $398 million, the RBL has been repaid in full and replaced by a new reservesbased lending facility with Guarantee Trust Bank (the “GT Bank RBL”) for the same principal amount, with the following notable advantages:

  • The original RBL had a repayment date in mid-2021, while the GT Bank RBL has a late-2025 repayment date, consequently reducing quarterly repayments and freeing cashflow (in excess of $80 million per year until mid-2021) for further drilling and development.
  • The DSRA requirement under the GT Bank RBL is reduced to two future quarterly repayments which combined with the lower quarterly repayment amounts means that only approximately $50 million is required in the DSRA compared with more than $100 million previously.

The refinanced interest rate is marginally higher at approximately 11% (versus 10% previously).

Oisin Fanning, CEO of San Leon, commented:
“I am delighted with the terms secured by Eroton for the RBL restructuring, and the impact which Eroton expects this to have, both unlocking substantial additional funds for operational activity, as well as lowering the DSRA hurdle to Eroton paying dividends to its shareholders.

This is a further material step in addressing previously identified operational and financing issues at OML 18 and follows the recent announcements of new well drilling, and of NNPC (the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation) paying most of their cash call arrears.”

Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) Disclosure
Certain information contained in this announcement would have been deemed inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 until the release of this announcement

Enquiries:
San Leon Energy plc
Oisin Fanning, Chief Executive (+ 353 1291 6292)

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe (Nominated adviser, financial adviser and joint broker to the Company)
Nick Tulloch (+44 131 257 4634)
David Porter (+44 207 894 8896)

Whitman Howard Limited (Financial adviser and joint broker to the Company)
Nick Lovering (+44 20 7659 1234)

Brandon Hill Capital Limited (Joint broker to the Company)
Oliver Stansfield (+44 203 463 5000)
Jonathan Evans (+44 203 463 5016)

Vigo Communications (Financial Public Relations)
Chris McMahon (+44 207 390 0232)
Simon Woods (+44 207 390 0236)

Plunkett Public Relations
Sharon Plunkett (+353 1 280 7873)

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