Royal Dutch Shell extends deadline to buy Cove Energy

15 June 2012

Royal Dutch Shell said Thursday that it had, for the second time, extended the deadline – until 27 June – for shareholders of Irish company Cove Energy to opt for its offer of US$1.7 billion to buy the company.

Shareholders of Cove Energy, whose main asset is an 8.5 percent stake in an oil block in Mozambique, have to choose between the offer from Royal Dutch Shell of 220 pence per share and a 240 pence per share offer from Thai group PTT Exploration & Production PCL.

Although Cove Energy’s board of directors initially recommended shareholders to accept the proposal from Anglo-Dutch group Royal Dutch Shell, it later took a similar stance on PTT’s proposal. Just 5 percent of shareholders have so far accepted Shell’s offer.

The oil block in the Rovuma basin, northern Mozambique, is operated by US group Anadarko Petroleum, which has a stake of 36.5 percent, and the remaining partners are Japan’s Mitsui & Co., with 20 percent, India’s Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited and Videocon, with 10 percent each, Mozambique’s ENH (15 percent) and Cove Energy (8.5 percent).

On Monday Anadarko Petroleum announced it had found more natural gas in the block, which increased estimated gas reserves there to 60 trillion cubic feet.

Europe’s four main economies – Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and Italy – together consume around 10 trillion cubic feet of natural gas each year. (macauhub)