Oil and natural gas major Total SA became the second largest global liquefied natural gas (LNG) player on Friday with the completion of its acquisition of Engie SA’s portfolio of upstream LNG assets valued at $1.5 billion, the French company said.
Additional payments to Engie of up to $550 million could be payable “in case of an improvement in the oil markets in the coming years,” Total said.
Among Engie’s most notable assets is its 16.6% interest in Sempra Energy’s Cameron LNG project now underway, which is in the final stages of construction and expected to be producing in 2019.
The Engie portfolio being acquired also includes liquefaction capacity of 23 million metric tons/year (mmty), which is distributed among major LNG production areas including the Middle East, Australia, Russia and the United States.
The purchase also includes Engie’s global LNG trading contracts portfolio estimated at 28 mmty, as well as regasification capacities of 18 mmty in Europe and a fleet of 18 LNG carriers, two of which are floating storage and regasification units, Total said.
“Acquiring Engie’s LNG business is a real step change for Total, allowing us to leverage size and flexibility in the fast growing and increasingly commoditized LNG market,” said Total CEO Patrick Pouyanné.
The transaction increases Total’s worldwide market share to 10%, with the group now managing an overall LNG portfolio of around 40 mtpy by 2020. Total in late 2016 took a 23% stake in Tellurian Investments Inc., which has proposed the Driftwood LNG terminal proposed in Louisiana.
Total, active in U.S. exploration and production since 1957, works in the onshore and the Gulf of Mexico, both U.S. waters and offshore Mexico. In the onshore, Total owns and operates 100% of the former Chesapeake Energy Corp. properties in the gassy Barnett Shale and is a 25% participant in a Utica Shale field.
Following the transaction, which was first announced last November, Total also takes over the teams in charge of the upstream LNG activities at Engie.