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August 25, 2009

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Centrica accrues 50.3% in driller

BRITISH gas distributor Centrica Group Plc said yesterday it has accumulated a 50.3 percent majority stake in its takeover target, North Sea driller Venture Production Plc.

Centrica said it bought 8.4 percent of Venture yesterday for 845 pence a share - the offer price under its 1.3 billion pound (US$2.1 billion) takeover bid - taking the total it owns to 40.1 percent. It added that it has already received acceptances for a further 10.2 percent.

Venture knocked back Centrica's offer in July, saying it substantially undervalued the company "given its near and long-term prospects and the strategic position and high quality of its UK gas reserves and resource."


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