Novus Petroleum makes takeover offer for Petroz

Novus Petroleum Ltd. has made a full takeover offer for all the shares of Petroz NL, Novus said Monday. This is a step up from the merger proposal launched last month.

Oct 17th, 2000

Novus Petroleum Ltd., Australia's fourth largest exploration and production company, announced Monday it's made an acquisition offer for all the shares of Petroz NL, of Brisbane, Australia.

Last month, Sydney-based Novus issued an unsolicited detailed merger proposal to Petroz NL Sept. 12 allowing Petroz shareholders to exchange 4.5 Petroz shares for one Novus share (OGJ Online, Sept. 13, 2000). Through the new transaction plan, Novus will offer Petroz shareholders one Novus share for every 3.75 shares of Petroz.

The acquisition is valued at 48.8�/share, based on the closing price of Novus shares of $1.83 on Friday, Oct. 13. It's also valued at 50.4�/share, based on the weighted average price of Novus shares of $1.89 in the week prior to Sept. 13, which is the day on which the original Novus merger proposal was announced.

Novus said the offer represents a "significant premium" of 78% of the weighted average share price for Petroz for the 3 months prior to July 19, 2000. The offer will enable Petroz to retain its exposure in and meet development costs of the Bayu-Undan natural gas/condensate field project, located in the Timor Sea between Indonesia and Australia.

"We are hopeful that the Petroz board will recognize these improvements, including the enhanced control premium, and therefore recommend that Petroz shareholders accept our offer," said Bob Williams, managing director of Novus. Novus will next present Petroz a bidder's statement, open for one month unless extended, outlining reasons Petroz shareholders should accept the offer.

The offer is contingent upon Novus acquiring more than 50% of Petroz.

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