Response to press speculation Jan 2018
SOCO International plc (“SOCO”) notes the recent press speculation regarding a possible transaction with Kuwait Energy plc (“Kuwait Energy”). SOCO confirms that, in the context of its stated objective to strategically reshape its business and grow its portfolio, it is evaluating a potential merger of equals with Kuwait Energy.
Discussions with Kuwait Energy's newly-constituted Board of Directors are preliminary and no transaction terms have been agreed.
There can be no certainty that any agreement will be reached between SOCO and Kuwait Energy or its shareholders. SOCO will update the market as and when it is appropriate to do so.
SOCO’s Board remains committed to its strategy of shareholder value creation through sustainable cash returns to shareholders and growth of the business. The SOCO team, which has a track record of delivering shareholder value through asset acquisition and monetisation, delivering large scale developments, and returning capital to shareholders, evaluates M&A opportunities with reference to strict strategic, financial and operational criteria. Any transaction will be pursued only if it is determined by SOCO’s Board to be in the best interest of shareholders.
SOCO International plc
Ed Story, President and Chief Executive Officer
Jann Brown, Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer
Mike Watts, Managing Director
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7747 2000
Tel: +44 (0) 20 3757 4980
Given the relative sizes of SOCO and Kuwait Energy, including their respective stated oil & gas reserves, any transaction would be likely to constitute a reverse takeover for SOCO for the purposes of the UK Listing Authority's Listing Rules. Further background and financial information on Kuwait Energy is available on Kuwait Energy’s website: http://www.kuwaitenergy.co
The contents of Kuwait Energy's website referred to in this announcement and the content of any website accessible from the hyperlinks on Kuwait Energy's website are not incorporated in, nor do they form, any part of this announcement.
NOTES TO EDITORS
SOCO is an international oil and gas exploration and production company, headquartered in London and traded on the London Stock Exchange. The company has exploration, field development and production interests in Vietnam and exploration and appraisal interests in the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville) and Angola.
SOCO holds a 30.5% working interest in the Te Giac Trang Field of Block 16-1, which is operated by the Hoang Long Joint Operating Company. Block 16-1 is located in the shallow water Cuu Long Basin, offshore southern Vietnam.
SOCO holds a 25% working interest in the Ca Ngu Vang field of Block 9-2, which is operated by the Hoan Vu Joint Operating Company. Block 9-2 is located in the shallow water Cuu Long Basin, offshore southern Vietnam.
SOCO holds a 70% interest in and is designated operator of Blocks 125 & 126, located in the moderate to deep water Phu Khanh Basin, offshore central Vietnam.
SOCO Exploration and Production SA holds a 40.39% interest and is designated Operator of each of the Lidongo, Viodo, Lideka and Loubana permit areas offshore the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville).