Indian consortium drops out of race to buy Ireland’s Cove Energy

20 June 2012

The consortium made up of Indian companies ONGC Videsh and GAIL (India) has announced it will no longer put forward a proposal to buy Irish mining company Cove Energy, whose main asset is an 8.5 percent stake in an oil block in Mozambique, financial news agency Reuters reported.

Now that the Indian consortium, in which ONGC Videsh is a subsidiary of state group Oil and Natural Gas Corp, has dropped out just two groups are aiming to acquire Cove Energy: Royal Dutch Shell and state Thai group PTT Exploration and Production, for 220 pence per share and 240 pence per share, respectively.

Overall the Thai group is offering US$1.9 billion for Cove Energy, whilst Royal Dutch Shell’s offer is for US$1.7 billion, although analysts cited by the news agency said that the Anglo-Dutch group may raise its offer.

The oil block in the Rovuma basin, northern Mozambique, in which Cover Energy has an 8.5 percent stake, 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, and Mozambique’s ENH (15 percent). (macauhub)