17/09/2008 - 10:57

Serious concerns over Cooper offer

17/09/2008 - 10:57

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Perth-based Incremental Petroleum Ltd said it does not see any synergies in merging with Cooper Energy Ltd as it again reiterated calls to shareholders to take no action on the bid.

Perth-based Incremental Petroleum Ltd said it does not see any synergies in merging with Cooper Energy Ltd as it again reiterated calls to shareholders to take no action on the bid.

Directors in Incremental said they are reviewing Cooper's bidder's statement, lodged yesterday with the ASX.

Last week South Perth-based Cooper launched the unsolicited $104 million takeover, laying two options on the table for Incremental shareholders.

Shareholders can either accept the scrip offer of 3.1 Cooper shares for each Incremental share or receive 50 cents cash and 1.9 Cooper shares for one Incremental share.

In a statement today, Incremental said it had "serious concerns" over Cooper's bidder's statement and will seek clarifications from the company.

Incremental, which has previously called the takeover opportunistic, did not outlinewhat aspects of Cooper's bidder's statement it was concerned with.

The takeover target also clarified to shareholders that recent discussions between the two companies were initiated by Cooper and that its decision to lodge a formal takeover bid was unsolicited.

In its bidder's statement yesterday, Cooper chairman Laurence Shervington said both companies have highly complementary exploration and production interests which when combined will create a diversified asset portfolio spreading across Australia, Indonesia, Turkey, Tunisia and the US.

"The merged group will immediately benefit from increased oil production diversified across seven Australian onshore oil fields, one Turkish onshore oil field and one onshore oil field in the USA," Mr Shervington said.

"This production coupled with Cooper's substantial cash position, will create an outstanding funding platform for the next phase of development, appraisal and exploration of the merged group."

The merged entity is expected to have a market capitalisation of about $200 million.

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