One of Zimbabwe’s richest business tycoons Shingai Mutasa has won a bid to acquire BP & Shell Marketing Services (BPSMS)’s refined oil marketing assets in Zimbabwe, including depots and service stations, through FMI Zimbabwe, a wholly owned subsidiary of his London-listed investment company, Masawara plc.
The Shell Petroleum Company trades under the BP franchise in Zimbabwe.
Collectively, BPSM local assets include 73 retail sites, six country depots, four town depots and a lubricants plant, now dormant, among others.
The facilities are currently being rented by a number of indigenous oil dealers such as Redan Petroleum, Sakunda Energy and Comoil, which were also vying for the same assets in a counter-bid to South Africa-based Engen Petroleum and KenoilKobil, which lost the deal on indigenisation grounds.
BP Southern Africa CEO Sipho Maseko on Monday revealed the global energy company had in principle agreed to sell its assets to FMI Zimbabwe.
“With their experience and existing businesses in Zimbabwe, we believe that FMI Zimbabwe will be able to build on BPSMS’s good assets and grow the business further in line with their plans,” Maseko said.
Masawara in which Mutasa owns 63,4%, also confirmed the deal through a spokesperson.
“As a Zimbabwean company we look forward to growing this business and meeting the needs of all Zimbabweans,” the spokesperson said.
The deal is expected to easily pass the indigenisation test given that both Masawara and FMI Zimbabwe are locally-owned.
Registered in Jersey, Masawara sold 29,9% to London-based Invesco plc in August and subsequently listed on AIM, raising approximately $25 million to finance strategic acquisitions in the country.
In spite of the dilution, Mutasa is confident to grow his empire by leaps and bounds through Masawara, where he sits as a non-executive director.
He is also the executive chairman of TA Holdings, a rapidly expanding investment company in which Masawara owns 30%.
Masawara also owns 40% of Joina City, the largest retail and commercial property in Harare.