* Private firms seen replacing majors in African fuels
* Follows AOG's plan to invest $400 million
GENEVA, March 20 Addax & Oryx Group (AOG) said
it has agreed to buy BP and Masana Petroleum Solution's
liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) distribution business in South
Africa as it seeks a bigger stake in the booming African fuels
Oryx Energies, the downstream branch of AOG chaired by
billionaire Jean Claude Gandur, said on Wednesday it expected to
finalise the deal in the third quarter of 2013.
The BP and Masana businesses in South Africa generate annual
sales of around 60,000 tonnes of LPG -- a product used for
heating and cooking.
The value of the sale was not disclosed.
Gandur said in February that the group planned to invest
$400 million in Africa's energy sector over the next five years
after talks to sell its trading and downstream assets fell
through last year.
"This is an important step in the roll out of our regional
LPG strategy," Gandur said in the emailed statement.
Private trading houses such as Trafigura and
Vitol have also sought to expand their network of
downstream African assets in recent years by purchasing assets
from oil majors.
Ecobank Research projects African fuel demand to rise by 40
percent to 4.3 million barrels per day in 2020.
AOG, which has offices in Geneva, also has businesses in the
upstream oil sector and real estate.