Berkley: Good response to data rooms

Takeover target Berkley Petroleum Ltd., Calgary, said it received an enthusiastic response from potential buyers after it opened its data rooms to potential bidders Jan. 10. The company is fighting a $1.4 billion (Can.), $10/share hostile bid from Dallas-based Hunt Oil Co. It has described the offer as inadequate and opportunistic.


CALGARY�Takeover target Berkley Petroleum Ltd., Calgary, said it received an enthusiastic response from potential buyers after it opened its data rooms to potential bidders Jan. 10.

The company is fighting a $1.4 billion (Can.), $10/share hostile bid from Dallas-based Hunt Oil Co. It has described the offer as inadequate and opportunistic. The offer includes assumption of about $380 million in Berkley debt.

Berkley CEO Mike Rose said the company is trying to get the best deal for shareholders and is �encouraged� by the response from potential buyers.

The company has hired financial advisors to assist in a possible sale and has put a shareholder rights plan in place.

Berkley shares closed at $11.45 on the Toronto Stock Exchange Jan. 11, and the shares have risen about 30% since a Hunt unit made the offer Dec. 27.

Hunt owns 9.6% of Berkley shares and would gain about $39 million if it sold them. Hunt said it is not looking for a profit on a share sale but wants to expand and acquire assets in Canada.

Berkley has a 21% interest in a major gas play in the Fort Liard region of Canada�s Northwest Territories and is also involved in a major deep gas play at East Lost Hills in California�s San Joaquin Valley. The company has also begun an exploration program in Oman.

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