Linklaters and Wachtell advise on $2.2bn PNG oil deal

Linklaters, Allens, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz and Goodmans are advising on Oil Search’s $2.2bn (£1.5bn) acquisition of InterOil.

Linklaters and Allens – its Australian alliance firm – are acting for Oil Search on the deal, which sees the oil and gas exploration business buy fellow Papa New Guinea company InterOil.

Linklaters’ team is based in the firm’s New York office and is led by corporate partner Peter Cohen-Millstein.

Canadian outfit McCarthy Tetrault is also advising the purchaser.

Oil Search has also signed a memorandum of understanding with Total, which sees it sell 60% of the interest acquired from InterOil in Petroleum Retention Licence 15 in the Gulf Province of Papa New Guinea, and 62% of InterOil’s exploration assets, to Total.

Allens M&A partners Richard Kriedemann and Vaughan Mills are advising on the InterOil deal, with Mills leading for Oil Search on its agreement with Total.

Allens previously advised Oil Search in 2014 on its acquisition of around a 20% stake in a new liquefied natural gas project in Papua New Guinea operated by Total.

In addition, Oil Search turned to Allens last year for counsel on Australian rival Woodside’s rejected $8.2bn (£5.3bn) takeover bid. It is understood that Herbert Smith Freehills advised Woodside on its offer.

InterOil has mandated Wachtell for legal advice on the Oil Search deal, alongside Toronto firm Goodmans.

Goldman Sachs and Macquarie Capital are acting as financial advisers to Oil Search, while InterOil has turned to Morgan Stanley & Co as its lead financial adviser, alongside Credit Suisse and UBS.