Sahara is an Isle of Man company engaged in the oil industry. Rahamaniyya is a Nigerian incorporated entity. It has a trading arm, the Second Defendant in these proceedings, called Ultimate Oil & Gas DMCC ("Ultimate"). Mr Bashir, a Nigerian national, is the CEO and a director of Rahamaniyya. Mr Aderemi, also a Nigerian national, is manager of Rahamaniyya's terminal in Nigeria. There was no dispute that Rahamaniyya, as might be expected from a company that runs an oil terminal and could enter into contracts of the magnitude relevant to the present proceedings, is a reasonably substantial business in Nigeria. The fine of £ 500,000, imposed by Butcher J on that company, took into account the size of the company.
The present proceedings have their origins in a contract between Sahara and Ultimate Oil & Gas DMCC dated 16 July 2018. Ultimate agreed to buy, and Sahara agreed to sell 15,000 MT VAC +/- 5% of Gas Oil (the "Sale Contract"). Prior to entering into the Sale Contract, a "Collateral Management and Storage Agreement" ("CMA") was entered into on 8 July 2018 between Sahara, Rahamaniyya (as the 'Storer' of the Gas Oil) and two other parties. Under the CMA, Rahamaniyya agreed to store the gas oil at its terminal pending payment by Ultimate. The CMA contains a London arbitration clause.