Saudi Aramco has entered into a $12.4 billion deal with a consortium of investors led by EIG Global Energy Partners that would give the investor group a 49% stake in Aramco's pipeline assets, the two companies said.
The EIG-led group signed a lease and lease-back agreement with Aramco, acquiring the equity stake in the newly formed Aramco Oil Pipelines Co, with rights to 25-years of tariff payments for oil transported through Aramco's crude oil pipeline network, it said in a statement. Aramco will own 51% stake in the new company.
"Upon closing, Aramco will receive upfront proceeds of around $12.4 billion, further strengthening its balance sheet through one of the largest energy infrastructure deals globally," the company said in a statement late Friday.
EIG is a Washington, D.C.-based investment firm that has invested more than $34 billion in energy and energy infrastructure projects around the world.
"The transaction represents a continuation of Aramco’s strategy to unlock the potential of its asset base and maximize value for its shareholders," Aramco said in its statement.
Aramco will at all times retain title and operational control of, the pipeline network and will assume all operating and capital expense risk, the companies said.
The transaction will not impose any restrictions on Aramco’s actual crude oil production volumes that are subject to production decisions issued by the Kingdom.
Aramco's Chief Executive Amin Nasser said "moving forward, we will continue to explore opportunities that underpin our strategy of long-term value creation."