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About Darren

Darren Spalding is a corporate lawyer dedicated to the energy sector. He advises clients on oil and gas M&A transactions and projects across the upstream, midstream and downstream value chain, with a particular focus on cross-border matters, having worked on deals and projects in more than 30 jurisdictions. Darren is regularly called upon to advise on, and negotiate, all of the key documents relating to the oil and gas industry, including production sharing contracts, joint operating agreements, shareholder agreements and crude oil and gas sales and transportation agreements.

Darren has been recognized as a leading M&A lawyer by IFLR1000 Financial & Corporate Guide (2017). He is also highly regarded by The Legal 500 United Kingdom (2014 - 2017) for his work in the oil and gas sector, with clients noting that he is “extremely conscientious,” provides “a full suite of support,” has “deep contractual expertise” and “a fantastic understanding of extremely complicated issues.”

Darren Spalding, who is noted for his ‘exemplary knowledge and attention to detail.’
The Legal 500 United Kingdom


Recent Notable Matters

Ophir Energy plc — $2 billion floating LNG project offshore Equatorial Guinea, including host government arrangements, LNG sales agreements, chartering agreements, joint venture arrangements, project financing, and construction

Hess Corporation — $1 billion sale to ONGC Videsh of its interests in the ACG field in Azerbaijan and BTC pipeline

ConocoPhillips — $75 million sale of midstream pipeline assets

BG Group — acquisition from Shell of a 30 percent interest in upstream oil and gas assets in Colombia

JKX Oil & Gas plc — acquisition from, and sale to, HHE of certain upstream oil and gas assets in Hungary under an asset swap transaction

Murphy Oil Corporation — sale of its entire North Sea upstream oil and gas business, including its interests in the Schiehallion field to Shell, Mungo and Monan fields to First Oil and the Amethyst field to Perenco

VTTI Energy Partners GP, LLC — acquisition of a 6.6 percent interest for $75 million and an 8.4 percent interest for $96 million in the operating company owning petroleum product terminals in the Netherlands, Belgium, Malaysia, the UAE and the U.S.

Chevron Corporation — $1.7 billion sale to Valero of its downstream business in the U.K. and Ireland, including the Pembroke refinery

Keppel Group — acquisition of a 20 percent stake in Krisenergy, an oil and gas company with assets in Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Bangladesh

BG Group — acquisition of a 78 percent interest and new country entry into blocks IV and VI, Mongolia

Delek Drilling L.P. and Avner Oil Exploration L.P. — project agreements in relation to the development of the Tamar field offshore Israel in connection with its $900 million financing

Rosneft — acquisition from PDVSA of a 50 percent interest in the Ruhr Oel downstream refining joint venture in Germany with BP

DNO — merger with RAK Petroleum of their Middle East and North African upstream oil and gas businesses, valuing the combined assets at $1.9 billion

Chevron Corporation — €130 million sale to CEPSA of its downstream business in Spain

BP — $1.6 billion sale to Lukoil of a joint venture interest in the Tengiz field in Kazakhstan and the CPC pipeline from Kazakhstan to Russia

BP — $1.3 billion acquisition from Chevron of a 31 percent interest in the Nerefco refinery, tank farm and wind farm in the Netherlands

JKX Oil & Gas — acquisition of upstream oil and gas assets in Russia, Slovakia and Hungary

Publications and Speeches

“The UK Oil and Gas Authority: A catalyst for change?” International Law Office Energy & Natural Resources Newsletter, March 2016.

“‘Kind words and guns’ - Penalty clauses redefined by the English courts,” IFLR, January 2016.

“Government announces major North Sea tax cuts,” International Law Office Energy and Natural Resources Newsletter, May 2015.

“Underground Drilling Access for UK Shale Developers: The 300 Metre Question,” Natural Gas Europe, June 2014.

“Challenges of Methane Hydrates,” Oil & Gas Financial Journal, May 2014.

“The Future of the UK North Sea: A New Game with More Rules,” Oil & Gas Financial Journal, March 2014.



Murdoch University, Perth, Australia,
with honors
University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia,

Bar Admissions

Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales
Solicitor in New South Wales, Australia
Barrister and Solicitor in Western Australia, Australia



UK Government Continues the Fight for Shale

October 6, 2015
Natural Gas Europe

Private Equity Hunts for Oil Deals Outside U.S.

June 17, 2015
Wall Street Journal Online

One more step towards UK shale

October 9, 2014
Oil & Gas Financial Journal - Online

UK announces unconventional petroleum licensing model clauses

June 26, 2014
Oil & Gas Financial Journal - Online

Challenges of methane hydrates

May 8, 2014
Oil & Gas Financial Journal - Online

The future of the UK North Sea

March 21, 2014
Oil & Gas Financial Journal - Online

Unlocking the potential of shale gas in the UK energy mix

January 6, 2014
Oil & Gas Financial Journal - Online

Countries make push for domestic reserves

December 9, 2013
World Oil Online

Growth beneath the surface

October 30, 2013
Drilling Contractor - Online

Environmental law: Drills, spills and bellyaches

September 29, 2013
Lawyer (Online), The



The Legal 500 United Kingdom
Projects, Energy and Natural Resources - Oil & Gas, 2014 - 2017
The Legal 500 EMEA
Regional Summary - Africa, 2017
Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC
IFLR Financial & Corporate Guide
Highly Regarded: M&A, 2017 - 2018
Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC
IFLR1000 Energy & Infrastructure Guide
Sub-Saharan Africa, 2016