Judge refuses to kill Petrobank's bid for Ranger

A Manhattan judge has rejected a bid by Ranger Oil Ltd., Calgary, to kill a $1.6 billion (Can.) hostile takeover bid by Petrobank Energy & Resources Ltd., also of Calgary. US District Court Judge Sidney Stein rejected an injunction to block the Petrobank offer and said Ranger did not prove it was irreparably damaged by Petrobank actions.


CALGARY�A Manhattan judge has rejected a bid by Ranger Oil Ltd., Calgary, to kill a $1.6 billion (Can.) hostile takeover bid by Petrobank Energy & Resources Ltd., also of Calgary. US District Court Judge Sidney Stein rejected a Ranger request for an injunction to block the Petrobank offer and said Ranger did not prove it was irreparably damaged by Petrobank actions.

Ranger had also alleged insider trading and disclosure violations. Those charges were denied by Petrobank and its executives, which made countercharges against Ranger. The court ruling did not directly address the issue of insider trading, and Ranger said that matter is still open.

Ranger, with production of 80,000 b/d, filed suit in New York because it has numerous US shareholders.

Petrobank CEO John Wright said his company may now concentrate on improving its offer to win broad shareholder support. The current offer expires June 5. It offers two Petrobank shares and $2.50 (Can.) cash for each Ranger share.

Ranger has opened data rooms in Calgary and the UK and is seeking other offers. There are unconfirmed reports that interested companies include Crestar Energy Inc., PanCanadian Petroleum Ltd., and Talisman Energy Inc., all of Calgary, plus Forest Oil Co., Denver, and Nuevo Energy Co., Houston.

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