Ofer extends NZOG offer period

Monaco-based Ofer Global's bid for a controlling stake in explorer New Zealand Oil & Gas (NZOG) is gaining further traction and it has again extended the offer period, until January 8, although it is the last extension it can make.

As of yesterday, Ofer Global had gained more than 43% acceptances of its 74c per share offer, but that is, technically, 60% given Australian company Zeta Resources had earlier indicated it would sell its 17% NZOG stake after its own NZOG takeover offer failed.

Zeta said it would sell once Overseas Investment Office consent was granted and Ofer said yesterday the extension was to allow time to obtain the necessary regulatory approvals.

In an NZX market notice yesterday, Ofer said: ''The minimum acceptance condition will be satisfied once we receive acceptances which will result in us holding or controlling more than 50% of the voting rights in New Zealand Oil & Gas.''

NZOG has deepwater permits off the coast of Oamaru and Invercargill, with the former described as highly prospective for oil and gas, although eight test wells during the past 30 years have found no commercially viable oil, gas or condensates.

Houston-based Anadarko last week signalled it was pulling out of New Zealand, including its prospect off the coast of Oamaru, citing persistently low global oil prices.

Under the Takeover Code, this is the last time Ofer can extend its offer.


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