Petroceltic resolves shareholder dispute over $100m placing

Monday 16 June 2014 18.57
Petroceltic has interests in North Africa, the Mediterranean, eastern Europe and Iraq
Petroceltic has interests in North Africa, the Mediterranean, eastern Europe and Iraq

Oil and gas explorer Petroceltic has resolved a dispute with its largest shareholder that will allow it to press ahead with a $100m placing of shares following a shareholder meeting later this month. 

Petroceltic last month announced its intention to raise the cash to pursue new opportunities and fund its existing portfolio. 

But Worldview Capital Management, which holds a 20% stake in the company, had urged fellow shareholders to reject the proposal. 

The Swiss-based hedge fund said the placing, half of which was set aside for a new investor, Dovenby Capital, was an abuse of shareholder rights and questioned whether the new investor had sufficient exploration experience. 

After postponing last week's scheduled shareholder meeting to vote on the deal, Petroceltic said it had reached agreement with Worldview, ceding to demands to cut its board from to seven from nine members, two of which will be recommended by Worldview. 

"With the support of Worldview, it is now anticipated that the resolution at the EGM (emergency general meeting) to approve the placing will be successful," the group, which has rescheduled the meeting for June 26, said. 

Petroceltic has interests in North Africa, the Mediterranean, eastern Europe and Iraq.

"We are pleased to have reached agreement with Worldview, who have been shareholders of Petroceltic since 2011. We look forward to completing our $100m placing, welcoming our proposed new directors and to working with them with a particular focus on generating value for the benefit of all shareholders," commented Brian O'Cathain, the company's chief executive.