International law firm Stephenson Harwood has advised Soma Oil & Gas Holdings Limited ("Soma") on an equity investment of US$50 million from private equity investment company Winter Sky. The funding will enable Soma to take forward the initial stages of an exploration programme, agreed with the Federal Republic of Somalia in 2013, to develop the country's energy sector.
The additional funding will satisfy Soma's obligations to the Government of Somalia under a seismic option agreement, on which Stephenson Harwood also advised Soma in August 2013.
Philip Wolfe, Chief Financial Officer of Soma, said: "Stephenson Harwood's understanding of the African oil and gas sector combined with its corporate and corporate finance expertise has been invaluable to us over the past eight months during Soma's formation, its initial agreement with the Government of Somalia and in respect of this fundraising which is very important to the development of both Soma and the Somali oil and gas sector."
Commenting on the investment, Jeremy Sheldon, energy partner at Stephenson Harwood, said: "This is a very important transaction for Soma and Somalia. The next 12 months will undoubtedly see exciting changes in the country's energy assets. As a firm, we continue to demonstrate our strength and experience in advising on oil and gas transactions in Africa, providing specific industry related advice, in addition to corporate and corporate finance advice."
The principal Stephenson Harwood team advising Soma included lead partner Jeremy Sheldon, working with: Tony Edwards, Judith Elgood and Barbara Allen.