Comesa okays KenolKobil acquisition deal

The East and Central Africa’s regional anti-trust body has endorsed the acquisition of KenolKobil by French firm Rubis.

Rubis already sells petroleum products in Djibouti and Madagascar and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in Eswatini, Madagascar, and Comoros.

KenolKobil, on the other hand, sells petroleum products and LPG in Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania.

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) watchdog said the acquisition would not hamper competition in the region.

“The Committee for Initial Determination considered the merging parties post-merger combined market share are unlikely to raise significant competition concerns and will not materially alter the competitive structure of the relevant markets,” Comesa Competition Commission Board of Commissioners Chair Patrick Okilangole said.

Separate entities

The move could now see KenolKobil associated with the late Nicholas Biwott may as soon as next year disappears as a brand after years in the market.

This year, Rubis announced plans to buy 100 per cent ordinary shareholding of the listed firm and make it private.

The French firm has secured a 24 per cent stake which it brought from Wells and has the commitment to buy shareholding from KenolKobil boss David Ohana. Rubis has bought 367 million shares or 23.8 per cent in October this year from Wells Petroleum Ltd at Sh15.30 but will top up Sh2.8 billion under the deal.

“On successful conclusion of such takeover offer, Rubis will pay to Wells an amount equal to the difference per share and the market price paid to Wells,” Kenol Kobil said in a notice.

Rubis also expects to lock in 62 million shares of Tasmin Ltd, making up 4.17 per cent ownership of the firm.

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