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Ascent Resources PLC (AST)

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Tuesday 21 December, 2010

Ascent Resources PLC

Acquisition of interest in th

RNS Number : 3573Y
Ascent Resources PLC
21 December 2010
 



Ascent Resources plc / Epic: AST / Index: AIM / Sector: Oil and Gas

21 December 2010

Ascent Resources plc ('Ascent' or 'the Company')

Ascent to acquire EnQuest's interest in the Petişovci Project in Slovenia

 

Overview:

·    EnQuest to take equity stake in Ascent in return for its interest in the Petişovci Project

·    EnQuest to provide technical support to Ascent for the evaluation of future European business development opportunities

·    EnQuest to appoint Director to Ascent's Board

·    EnQuest to have an option over additional shares in Ascent, subject to certain criteria related to the successful development of the Project

 

Ascent Resources plc, the AIM-traded oil and gas exploration and production company, announces that the leading independent oil & gas company on the UK Continental Shelf, EnQuest PLC, ('EnQuest') has today agreed to dispose its 48.75% interest in the Petişovci Project ('the Project') in Slovenia, in return for a 22.5% equity stake in Ascent. 

 

Post the completion of this transaction, Ascent will see its interest in the deep reservoirs of the highly prospective Petişovci Concession increase from 26.25% to 75%.  On a diluted basis, existing shareholders in Ascent will initially see their exposure to the core Petişovci Project area increase to 58.1%. 

 

EnQuest has agreed to provide technical support to Ascent for the Petişovci Project, as well as for the evaluation of future European business development opportunities.  Additionally as part of the agreement and to underpin its support, EnQuest has agreed to appoint Graham Cooper, EnQuest's Head of Business Development, to the Board of Ascent as a non-executive Director.

 

In addition to the issue of 150,903,958 new ordinary shares to EnQuest, Ascent will also grant EnQuest a nil cost option over 29,686,000 additional new ordinary shares, subject to certain criteria related to the successful development of the Petişovci project.  The option will potentially allow EnQuest to benefit from the future success of the Project, however should the interest in the deep reservoirs of the Petişovci licence be relinquished, the option lapses without recourse.  EnQuest has committed to a 12 month lock-in and a subsequent 12 month orderly market agreement on all its shares issued, including those resulting from any exercise of the option.

 

Ascent's Managing Director Jeremy Eng said, "This transaction is an excellent outcome for Ascent shareholders, as we have increased our interest in this core field and will now retain a 75% interest in this Slovenian licence for our shareholders.  Additionally, I am delighted that EnQuest is expressing its confidence in Ascent through this transaction, and by its acceptance of a board seat, Ascent can expect to benefit substantially from EnQuest's experience.  Against the background of the imminent commencement of drilling of the Pg-11 well, the first well to be drilled into the core field area in 30 years, and with substantially increased equity in the project, which allows us to work efficiently with Geoenergo our Slovenian partners, I look forward to working with a company of EnQuest's calibre and reputation, to enable us to optimise the value of these assets for our respective shareholders."

* * ENDS * *

 

For further information visit www.ascentresources.co.uk or contact:

 

Jeremy Eng

Ascent  Resources plc

Tel: 020 7251 4905

Simon Cunningham

Ascent  Resources plc

Tel: 020 7251 4905

Sarah Wharry

finnCap Ltd

Tel: 020 7600 1658

Henrik Persson

finnCap Ltd

Tel: 020 7600 1658

Hugo de Salis

St Brides Media & Finance Ltd

Tel: 020 7236 1177

 

Notes

Ascent Resources plc has a diversified portfolio of hydrocarbon exploration and development interests across five countries in Europe: Italy, Switzerland, Hungary, Slovenia and Netherlands.  Its portfolio contains a solid base of field redevelopment projects with selected exposure to exploration upside.  The portfolio is focussed on gas and with the exception of the shallow water Netherlands project, all of its projects are located onshore where operating and development costs are substantially lower than they would be offshore.

 

EnQuest PLC is an independent oil & gas production and development company focused on the UK Continental Shelf. Shares in EnQuest trade on both the London Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ OMX Stockholm.  EnQuest is a constituent of the FTSE 250 index and OMX Nordix Index. Its assets include the Thistle, Deveron, Heather, Broom, West Don and Don Southwest fields.  EnQuest intends to deliver sustainable growth in shareholder value by focusing on exploiting its existing reserves, commercialising and developing discoveries, converting its significant contingent resources into reserves and pursuing selective acquisitions. EnQuest is focused on increasing production from its existing assets in its core hub areas.

 


This information is provided by RNS
The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
 
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