San Leon to hive off Irish assets for €2.2m

Dublin-headquartered oil and gas company, San Leon Energy has reached agreement to sell the bulk of its Irish assets to Ardilaun Energy — a vehicle controlled by exploration investor, John McKeon — for $3m (€2.2m).

The move will see San Leon, chaired by former Smart Telecom chief, Oisin Fanning with its shares listed on London’s AIM index, focus more sharply on its core foreign assets, particularly in Poland, Morocco and Turkey.

Earlier this week, the company announced an agreement to buy 75% of Turkish exploration firm, Alpay Enerji for $4m.

Most of San Leon’s Irish assets, including acreages in the Porcupine, Slyne and Rockall basins; as well as assets in the Celtic Sea at the Seven Heads gas field, Old Head of Kinsale and Schull gas field, are under its Island Oil & Gas unit, the company which San Leon acquired three years ago.

The deal — a binding heads of agreement has been signed between San Leon and Ardilaun — will see Ardilaun pay $1m on completion (once necessary regulatory approval is granted) and the balance within the following 12 months. San Leon will also receive a 20% shareholding in Ardilaun.

It is understood that Mr McKeon, a co-founder of Limerick-based explorer, Circle Oil, plans to list Ardilaun on an international exchange at some point.

Not included in the sale is San Leon’s interest in the Barryroe field in the Celtic Sea.

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