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Clifford Chance leads on Shell’s $3bn disposal of North Sea assets

Clifford Chance, Dechert, White & Case and Watson Farley & Williams have all landed roles on Shell’s sale of $3.8bn worth of North Sea oil and gas assets.

The deal sees British investment firm Chrysaor Holdings buy out an initial consideration of $3bn plus an additional potential payment of up to $600m subject to commodity price and $180m for future oil and gas finds.

Chrysaor was advised by Dechert M&A partner Jonathan Angell with specialist oil and gas advice from Bond Dickinson partner Paul Stockley.

Panel firm Clifford Chance were the lead advisers to Shell on the M&A side of the deal, alongside Shell’s in-house team.

White & Case partners Ian Bagshaw and Richard Jones advised energy investment house Harbour Energy Limited, an investment vehicle managed by EIG Global Energy Partners, on its agreement to lead for Chrysaor on the acquisition of the oil and gas portfolio. Watson Farley partner Joe Levin also acted as an adviser for third party banks.

The deal is the third major announcement for White & Case’s private equity team in January. Global private equity head Bagshaw led on Bridgepoint group’s recent £750m buyout of vehicle business Zenith from HgCapital. The team also advised Bridgepoint earlier this month along with Stockholm-based Nordic Cinema Group Holding AB on the $929m sale of Nordic to AMC theatres.

Shell’s divestment to Chrysaor follows its £47bn acquisition of BG Group in 2015. Slaughter and May advised Shell, supported by Cravath Swaine & Moore in the US while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer acted for BG.

Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell reduced its core panel of legal advisers last year from 11 to six firms. Eversheds, Reed Smith Clifford Chance, Allen & Overy, Baker & McKenzie and Norton Rose Fulbright were all understood to have been appointed.