PTT Exploration and Production Plc (PTTEP), Thailand’s sole gas explorer, has again extended its offer to purchase shares of the London-based Cove Energy Plc, this time to next Tuesday.
Terms and conditions of the offer otherwise remain unchanged, the company said in a statement submitted to the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) yesterday
“We’ve extended our share purchase offer deadline because some Cove shareholders may be waiting for another company to make an offer,” said chief executive Tevin Vongvanich.
This is the third extension, after previous deadlines of July 16 and 25.
Cove has an 8.5 percent stake in the Rovuma Area 1 gas field, which has already been drilled and shown probable reserves of 66 trillion cubic feet.
The field has been tagged for liquefied natural gas (LNG) production.
Besides Cove, shareholders in the field include the Texas-based Anadarko Petroleum (36.5%), the Mitsui Group (20%), the Mozambican government (15%), the India-based Videocon (10%) and India’s Bharat Petroleum (10%).
Cove also owns 10 percent in Mozambique’s Rovuma onshore block and seven deep-water petroleum fields off Kenya, where it has stakes ranging from 10-25%.
All eight fields are now being explored.
PTTEP said in its report that 72.14 percent of Cove’s shareholders have agreed to sell their shares to the company, but it expects more than 90 percent will eventually agree to its offer.
The company expects the deal will be finalised and transaction completed within the next two months.
Tevin said if fewer than 90 percent of Cove shareholders vote for the deal, then PTTEP will consider its next move.
Last week Shell withdrew its offer in order to talk to another major of the Rovuma Area 1 shareholder instead, Anardako Petroleum Corporation, which owns 36.5%.
A bidding price of US$1.9 billion or 240 pence a share was offered, beating Shell’s bid of 220 pence.
PTTEP is seeking to expand its East African LNG production base following its Cash and Maple gas fields off of northwestern Australia.
He said LNG production costs for this field are expected to be relatively low due to the huge reserve.
Gas can be transported via a 66-kilometre pipeline for processing on the mainland instead of developing costly floating gas platforms.
PTTEP shares closed yesterday on the SET at 151.50 baht, down 1.50 baht, in trade worth 597 million.