Tri-Ocean Energy: Company Snapshot

Date established 2006

Main sectors Exploration and production; trading and shipping; carbon trading; and renewable energy

Main business regions Egypt, Sudan and Syria

Chairman Moataz al-Alfi

Chief executive officer Mohamed el-Ansary

Tri-Ocean Energy in numbers

300,000 b/d: Production at Tri-Ocean Energy’s Sudan concession

40,000 tonnes: Carbon emissions cut by Tri-Ocean Energy at a sugar processing complex in Fayum

b/d=Barrels a day. Source: Tri-Ocean Energy

Tri-Ocean Energy structure

Cairo-based Tri-Ocean Energy is a privately owned energy firm that focuses on the exploration and production of hydrocarbons and the trading and shipping of oil and oil derivatives. The firm was founded in July 1986 and has since grown into a diversified regional company involved in renewable energy and carbon trading.

Tri-Ocean Energy financial results
  Operating Revenue  Net profit 
  ($m)  
2008 82 84
2009 128 56
*includes a capital gain of $89m. Source: Tri-Ocean Energy

Tri-Ocean Energy’s major shareholder is Egypt Kuwait Holding Company. Other shareholders include Egypt’s Commercial International Bank and Kuwait’s Bawabet al-Kuwait Holding Company. Tri-Ocean Energy has an authorised capital of $1bn and a subscribed capital of $300m.

The chief executive officer and co-founder is Mohamed el-Ansary. He previously worked for the UK/Dutch Shell Group and sits on the board of Egypt Kuwait Holding Company.

Tri-Ocean Energy operations

Oil exploration and production is the core of Tri-Ocean Energy’s business and the firm has assets in Egypt, Sudan and Syria.

In June 2007, the firm acquired a 50 per cent stake in Egypt’s North Shadwan concession in the Gulf of Suez, marking its first investment in the sector. Tri-Ocean Energy developed the concession in partnership with the UK’s BP and it is estimated to hold 100 million barrels of oil. In May 2008, Tri-Ocean sold a 20 per cent holding in the project to Beach Energy, a Australian listed firm.

Exploration and development assets
($m)
2008 424
2009 436
Source: Tri-Ocean Energy

In Sudan, Tri-Ocean Energy owns 5 per cent of one of the country’s largest oil producing blocks. The firm acquired the stake in project company, Petrodar, in January 2008. The concession is operated in partnership with Malaysia’s Petronas, China’s CNPC and Sinopec, and state-owned Sudapet. Average daily production has now reached 300,000 barrels a day. The concession’s reserves stand at 1,500 million barrels, according to data collected in July 2009.

Tri-Ocean Energy signed an agreement with Shell to acquire 30 per cent stakes in two exploration blocks in Syria in June 2009. The blocks – block 13 (Ammouria) and block 15 (Ouzeina) – are located in the southern part of Syria on the border with Iraq and Jordan. The firm expects the concession to produce about 100 million barrels of oil a day and 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

Tri-Ocean Energy also has a shipping division and a carbon trading and renewable energy unit. The company’s decision to operate across a broad range of sectors was strategic. By controlling all aspects of the value chain from exploration and production, trading and shipping through to refining, it aims to become a vertically-integrated company.

Tri-Ocean Energy started its shipping operations in 2007, signing a partnership agreement with Heidmar, a US commercial tanker operator. It has since built up a portfolio of time-chartered tankers ranging in size from mid-range to Suezmax.

Tri-Ocean Energy’s carbon trading and renewable energy unit is set for rapid expansion over the coming years. The company successfully completed its first emission reduction projects at Kafr al-Dawar and Fayum in Egypt in 2009.

The company intends to research and pursue opportunities in wind, solar and biofuels. To this end, Tri-Ocean Energy has partnered with Belgian environmental services company Waterleau to take advantage of the potential for biogas in the region. The company is also working with regional food producer Americana to offtake its waste for biogas production.

Egypt benefits from some of the best wind and solar resources in the world. The firm is looking to capitalise on this and is currently developing several solar projects in Egypt. It has also been commissioned by Upper Egypt-Red Sea for Investment and Development to conduct a feasibility study to assess the potential for concentrated solar power (CSP) projects in the region. Tri-Ocean Energy is also looking at the potential for wind power.

Tri-Ocean Energy ambitions

Over the past three years, Tri-Ocean Energy has grown from a local firm into an established regional player, with exploration and production assets in Egypt, Sudan and Syria. It has also completed a handful of clean development mechanism deals in its home country.

Tri-Ocean Energy plans to expand into new markets in the Middle East and North Africa. The company is considering opportunities in Oman, Yemen, Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. It is also studying opportunities in South Africa, India and Bangladesh. The firm is looking to add onshore and offshore projects to its portfolio, both as a partner and operator.

Tri-Ocean Energy Profile