Tuareg Capital’s portfolio company wins Shell contract

The Libya-focused private equity firm has won a contract with the global energy giant through its oil and gas services platform TAB Energy.

Etelaf Oil Services, a portfolio company of Tuareg Capital, has secured a contract from global petroleum company Shell. 

Under the contract, Etelaf, which primarily provides drilling services to oil companies operating in Libya, will commit one drilling rig to Shell’s exploration needs until at least 2011.

Tuareg Capital acquired a majority stake in Etelaf through TAB Energy, a platform company set up to provide services to Libya’s oil and gas sector. The investment was made out of the firm’s $100 million Libyan Fund, which was launched in 2007. Bahrain-based investment firm Capital Management House is the fund’s lead sponsor.

Libya: Strong
demand for
oil services.

In the medium to long term, demand for oil services, particularly in Libya, will remain strong, Khalid Najibi, Libyan Fund chairman as well as vice chairman and management director of Capital Management House, said in the statement.

“We see the global economy beginning to recover during 2010, driven by Asian demand, which will mean resilience and strength in oil prices and a positive impact for the oil services sector,” Najibi added.

Capital Management House played an important role in obtaining equity for the fund as well as debt financing for the rig from GCC financial institutions, said Adel Saudi, chairman and chief executive officer of Tuareg Capital, according to the statement.

The Libyan Fund is a Shari’a-compliant fund, which invests sectors such as energy and healthcare in Libya. It invests in early stage and growth businesses as well as take-privates, consolidation opportunities and real estate. The fund allocates no more than 20 percent of its capital to one investment and no more than 30 percent of its capital to one industry.

The fund is in advanced talks with a European healthcare provider to form a joint venture, which will provide healthcare services in Libya according to Capital Management House’s website.

Libya is also open to private equity investments in its infrastructure. Last month, the country awarded TAQA Arabia a $165 million contract to build the infrastructure for a gas distribution network linking 370,000 households across the country’s three major cities of Tripoli, Benghazi and Misurata. TAQA Arabia is a portfolio company of Cairo-based Citadel Capital.