(New Fortress Energy, 5.Jul.2022) — New Fortress Energy Inc. (NASDAQ: NFE) (“NFE”) and Apollo (NYSE: APO) today announced that they have entered into a definitive Equity Purchase and Contribution Agreement (the “Purchase and Contribution Agreement”) to sell 11 LNG infrastructure vessels owned by NFE to a newly formed joint venture (the “JV” or the “Platform”) between funds managed by Apollo and NFE in a transaction valued at approximately $2bn. The JV will be owned approximately 80% by Apollo funds and 20% by NFE.
This transaction will create a global marine infrastructure platform underpinned by long-term contracts, benefitting from NFE’s LNG downstream operations and development activities, as well as Apollo’s leading investment and maritime experience. The Platform provides critical infrastructure for the delivery, storage, and regasification of liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) to power countries around the world, which can reduce their reliance on oil and coal to lower carbon emissions while enabling potentially substantial cost savings. In addition to serving NFE’s projects globally, the Platform also serves a diversified customer base of utilities and energy companies worldwide under third-party charters.
The 11-vessel portfolio consists of 6 Floating Storage and Regasification Units (“FSRUs”), 2 LNG Carriers (“LNGCs”), and 3 Floating Storage Units (“FSUs”). The total implied enterprise value of the transaction is approximately $2bn, and NFE will receive approximately $1.1bn in proceeds after accounting for NFE’s share of the JV and paydown of existing debt.
As part of the transaction, NFE has agreed to charter 10 of the 11 of the vessels from the Platform for a period of up to 20 years commencing either upon close of the transaction or upon expiration of the vessels’ existing third-party charter agreements. The Platform will also seek growth opportunities in support of both NFE and third parties to support the energy transition and bolster energy security globally.
“Together with Apollo, we are creating a leading LNG marine infrastructure platform to help accelerate the energy transition while freeing up capital to continue to invest into our Fast LNG and downstream LNG projects worldwide,” said Wes Edens, Chairman and CEO of New Fortress Energy. “We are pleased to be partnering with Apollo in creating a maritime infrastructure company that will help support NFE’s growing LNG infrastructure needs going forward.”
Apollo Partner Brad Fierstein said, “Energy transition and energy reliability are global priorities and core to Apollo’s sustainable investing platform. We’re pleased to further these initiatives through this long-term investment alongside our JV partners at New Fortress Energy. This is a high-quality portfolio that increases energy security around the world, accelerates decarbonization efforts, and facilitates LNG use which is cleaner and more affordable than diesel. We look forward to investing behind the platform’s growth to drive a more sustainable future.”
Subject to satisfying customary closing conditions, including receipt of certain regulatory approvals and third-party consents, closing of the transaction is expected to occur in Q3 of 2022. Transaction proceeds are expected to be utilized to fund NFE’s FLNG projects, as well as for ongoing downstream infrastructure and general corporate purposes.