Saturday 29 April 2017

Circle Oil to be wound up after sale of €28m in assets

A worker walks past a pump jack on an oil field
A worker walks past a pump jack on an oil field

Sean Duffy

Irish oil and gas company Circle Oil has been placed into administration with the firm’s remaining €28m($30m) in assets to be sold to SDX Energy.

PwC will oversee the administration process with the company's debt thought to be well in excess of the €30m figure.

A strategic review undertaken last year found that the company had little chance of turning around its prospects after the fall in oil prices and problems with securing payment from an Egyptian partner.

The company was suspended from trading on the Alternative Investment Market Index in June of last year and was delisted in September.

In a statement, Circle Oil said: “The Group has suffered significant financial difficulties for some time in circumstances where the resource available to the Company under its borrowing facilities was reducing, compounded by the declining production profile from a maturing asset base, continued late payments from EGPC and the continued low oil price environment."

EGPC is the state-owned Egyptian oil company that Circle had been supplying. Sources with knowledge of the situation told the Irish Independent that securing payment from EGPC had become increasingly difficult at a time when depressed oil prices were already putting pressure on the company’s balance sheet.

Circle oil currently has no employees in Ireland, with the majority of the company's staff operating in the UK, Egypt and Morrocco

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