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Femi Otedola paid $19 million in arbitration award from Ardova over Forte Oil sale



Energy tycoon Femi Otedola has received $19 million in arbitration award over the share purchase agreement (SPA) involving the sale of Forte Oil now Ardova Plc, a source with knowledge of the subject told newsmen.

The settlement followed a ruling last October by the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), ordering Ignite Investments and Commodities Limited, the special purpose acquisition company of Ardova’s Chairman Abdulwasiu Sowami, to make SPA payments less the amount awarded for one of the claims by Zenon Petroleum.

Ignite Investments in 2019 agreed with Forte Oil to acquire 983 million shares equal to a 75 per cent stake from the latter, a deal worth N64.9 billion to be paid in three instalments.

The company would later allege a breach of warranty by Zenon Petroleum in respect of the SPA, causing Ignite Investments to launch a legal action, where it made claims against Zenon.

Zenon filed a counterclaim against Ignite Investments in reaction to a claim filed by the latter at the LCIA after an initial move to resolve the dispute failed.

The LCIA ruled in favour of Zenon in three out four claims last October.

In February, Mr Sowami offered minority shareholders in Ardova N17.38 per share translating to a total of N16.9 billion in order to buy out their 25.9 per cent stake (970.7 million shares) and take the company private.

“The offer price of ?17.38 represents a premium of 22.44% and 24.38% to the 30-day and 60-day volume weighted average share price of ?14.19 and ?13.97 respectively, on 30 November 2022,” Ardova said in a statement.

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