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  • Ahmed Saleh

Aramco to buy Esmax from Southern Cross Group, pending approvals

One of the top integrated energy and chemical businesses in the world, Aramco, has agreed to buy a 100% equity position in Esmax Distribusción SpA ("Esmax") from Southern Cross Group, a private equity firm with a focus on Latin America. Regulational permissions are one of the common prerequisites for the acquisition.

In Chile, Esmax is a top reseller of downstream fuels and lubricants. Retail fuel stations, airport operations, fuel distribution terminals, and a lubricant blending facility are all part of its nationwide footprint.

Esmax would be Aramco's first downstream retail investment in South America, recognizing the potential and allure of these markets while advancing Aramco's downstream value chain strengthening strategy. Aramco would be able to develop its retail operation abroad and secure markets for its refined products thanks to this purchase. Following Aramco's purchase of the worldwide products division of Valvoline Inc. in February 2023, the merger would also open up new market potential for Valvoline-branded lubricants.

"This agreement is yet another milestone in our strategy to grow Aramco's downstream presence globally and expand our retail, lubricants, and trading businesses," said Mohammed Y. Al Qahtani, President of Aramco Downstream. The chances it offers to work in harmony with our large trading and manufacturing systems excite us. Additionally, it establishes a foundation for the introduction of the Aramco brand in Chile and throughout South America, opening us a substantial opportunity to expand into new markets for our goods. Esmax is a successful company in Chile with over 100 years of history, high-quality assets, and room for expansion. As we continue to implement our downstream strategy, we are thrilled to have the exceptional Esmax team members join the Aramco family.

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