Total, Glencore and Gunvor are bidding for a 75 percent stake in Chevron’s South African downstream assets, which include a refinery, three industry sources told Reuters on Tuesday.
U.S. oil major Chevron said in January it planned to sell 75 percent of its South African business unit, which includes a 110,000-barrels-a-day refinery in Cape Town.
The second bidding round in which actual offers were made closed on Sept. 30, the sources said, with a selling price estimated at $1 billion expected for the assets in South Africa as well as neighbouring Botswana.
A second source with knowledge of the transaction said: “These companies comprise the front-runners for the bid. We might possibly get a (preferred bidder) decision by the first quarter of next year.”
French oil major Total, crude oil trader Gunvor and Glencore, a mining and trading company, declined to comment.
Chevron spokesman Braden Reddall said in an emailed response that the bidding process was continuing and “as a matter of policy, we do not disclose details of commercial activities”.
Financial advisor Rothschild & Co is helping Chevron on the sale, which has also seen interest from Sasol, the world’s largest gas-to-fuel producer, which said in July it was considering buying the majority stake.
Chevron is a leading refiner and marketer of petroleum products in South Africa, the most industrialised country in Africa, where it has had a presence for more than a century.
Besides the Cape Town refinery, Chevron also has interests in a lubricants plant in Durban on the east coast. Its network of Caltex service stations makes it one of South Africa’s top five petroleum brands, according to its website.
Credit: CNBC Africa