It was written. British energy supplier Centrica launched an assault riday on the oil and gas company enture Production, ery present in the North Sea. Its o er to purchase, ully in cash, alues the latter around 1.3 billion pounds, or approximately EUR 1.5 billion.
The British regulator o the mergers and acquisitions, Takeo er Panel, ga e to Centrica until today to clari y its intentions to enture, which he had acquired more than 20 o the capital in March, and who was then li ing under the threat o a takeo er bid.
Centrica is inally out o the wood without waiting or this date: in a statement published riday a ter the close o the London market, the Group announced it had brought its participation to 29 o enture capital (compared to pre iously 23.6) through the acquisition o titres held by the 3i in estment und, and proposed to the other shareholders redeem their shares at a price o 845 pence.
Hostility o enture
This price represents a premium o 87.6 rom mid-January, be ore the press began to report the interest o Centrica or enture Production, and 7.6 o er the last closing price o the company. Centrica has pointed out that this price was " air" and took into account the high exposure o his "target" in gas prices, which ha e plummeted in recent months in Britain.
enture Production, who had already booked a bad reception at the entrance o Centrica in turn table, holding the price paid at the time by the latter much too low, immediately rejected the o er to purchase, in iting its shareholders to rebut. "We sommes the largest independent producer o gas in the North Sea, recalled the Director General o the group, Mike Wagsta , this o er does not in any way the high quality and the strategic position o our reser es and gazières resources."
This displayed hostility was surprising. In recent weeks, other actors as Centrica, such as the Swedish atten all, German RWE and Danish Dong, ha e expressed their interest in the assets o enture. It there ore has e erything to gain to raise the auction.
enture is an oil and gas, company specialized in the operation o a multitude o deposits in the British North Sea, which ha e the particularity o ha ing been "abandoned" by the major companies due to a size considered too small. To Centrica, this operation is part o a strategy o de elopment upstream, i.e. in the production o clean energy. The group, owner o the gas British Gas Distributor, does indeed at the moment only a part o the energy that it pro ides, a big disad antage that ossil resources are increasingly scarce, and that lea es it ulnerable to luctuations in the wholesale rates. It is this strategy o sécurisation o supply in gas as in electricity, which prompted Centrica to orge, last may, an alliance with ED in the ield o nuclear power in the United Kingdom: the group bought the rench electrician 20 o British Energy, which pro ides approximately 20 o the production o current British, and the two partners plan to build all our reactors EPR re el.