Philex Petroleum Corp., the oil and gas unit of Philex Mining Corp., said Monday it decided to make a firm offer to acquire shares of minority shareholders in Forum Energy Plc. of the UK for 20 pence per ordinary share.
Philex Petroleum said in a disclosure to the stock exchange the offer was in response to Forum Energy’s announcement it would seek shareholders approval for the cancellation of admission to trading of Forum’s ordinary shares on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM, the international market for growing companies.
Forum Energy said the cancellation of the shares on the AIM would take effect on June 25.
Philex Petroleum said its offer was set out in a circular which Forum posted on Monday to its shareholders. The circular also set out the reasons for the cancellation and the notice of annual general meeting to be held on June 17.
Philex Petroleum, which owns 63.82 percent of Forum Energy’s existing issued share capital, is offering to acquire 36.17 percent of the company’s ordinary shares from qualifying shareholders.
Of the 36.17 percent that it proposes to acquire, Tidemark Holdings Ltd., which owns 27.14 percent of Forum Energy, decided not to accept Philex Petroleum’s offer.
Tidemark Holdings is a company controlled by former trade minister Roberto Ongpin.
Philex Petroleum said the offer was being financed from its own cash resources. The offer will expire on June 22, 2015.
Forum Energy owns a 70-percent stake in service contract 72, viewed as rich in petroleum reserves located at the Recto Bank in the disputed West Philippine Sea.
The board of Forum earlier said the company’s shares moved following its announcement on March 2 of the decision of the Energy Department to grant a force majeure on SC 72 due to the ongoing territorial dispute with China.
SC 72 covers an 8,800-square-kilometer area west off Palawan and is estimated to contain prospective resources of as much as 16.6 trillion cubic feet of gas and 416 million barrels of oil.
Philex Petroleum said minority shareholders should accept the offer as there could be no assurance that the pre-drill assumptions of estimate provided by the company’s independent petroleum consultants would provide technical evaluations.