Saudi Aramco has completed the acquisition of a 100% equity stake in Esmax Distribución (Esmax) from private equity company Southern Cross Group. 

The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.  

Esmax is a Chilean downstream company engaged in fuel and lubricant retailing.  

This move marks Aramco’s foray into the South American downstream retail market, aligning with its objective to enhance its downstream value chain. 

Esmax’s operations span across Chile, encompassing retail fuel stations, airport services, fuel distribution terminals and a lubricant blending plant.  

The acquisition, announced in September 2023, allows Aramco to ensure outlets for its refined products and supports its international retail business expansion. 

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The deal is also expected to open new market avenues for Valvoline branded lubricants, following Aramco’s acquisition of the Valvoline global products business in February 2023.  

Aramco said the expansion is in line with its goal of diversifying its global presence and securing a stronger foothold in international markets. 

Aramco executive vice-president of products & customers Yasser Mufti said: “We are delighted to conclude the acquisition of Esmax and look forward to working with the outstanding team on the ground in Chile to achieve our shared ambitions.  

“Aramco aims to be a primary global retail player and this deal combines our high-quality products and services, including Valvoline lubricants, with the experience and quality of an established operator in Chile.”  

Last month, the Saudi Ministry of Energy disclosed a significant increase in gas reserves at the Jafurah field, operated by Aramco.  

The additional reserves include 15 trillion standard cubic feet of gas and two billion barrels (bbbl) of condensate, boosting the field’s total resources to 229 trillion standard cubic feet of gas and 75bbbl of condensate. 

The Jafurah field, spanning roughly 17,000km², is one of Aramco’s most significant projects and plays a crucial role in the company’s energy transition efforts.