Petronas is eying potential exit for African fuel retailer Engen

by BLOOMBERG

PETROLIAM Nasional Bhd is reviving discussions on a potential exit from South African fuel retailer business Engen, people familiar with the matter said.

The Malaysian state energy company is studying options for its 74% stake in Engen, including a sale or initial public offering, according to the people. It has recently been fielding preliminary interest from potential buyers, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

Engen had 40.8 billion rand ($2.9 billion) of total assets at the end of 2019, according to its annual report. Deliberations are at an early stage, and there’s no certainty they will lead to a transaction, the people said.

A representative for Petronas said a review of its portfolio is a normal course of business but declined to comment on the specifics. A representative for Engen didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Petronas had previously held discussions about a listing of the Cape Town-based business as soon as early 2020, though the deal didn’t go ahead, Bloomberg News has reported.

Engen this year decided to convert its 120,000-barrel-per-day refinery into a storage facility after some fire damage occurred in December.

The firm was founded in 1881 and owns 1,280 service stations across seven African countries, according to its website.