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Shell misses out on £1.4bn French deal

Royal Dutch Shell is poised to miss out on a £1.4bn acquisition of French oil explorer Maurel & Prom.

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Royal Dutch Shell was reported last June to have been interested in buying the Paris-listed business, which has assets in Africa and Latin America. Photo: BLOOMBERG NEWS

Ben Harrington By   Sunday 17 Feb 2013

State-backed Indonesian company Pertamina has made an indicative offer for Maurel & Prom and is in talks to buy the business, City sources claimed.

Royal Dutch Shell was reported last June to have been interested in buying the Paris-listed business, which has assets in Africa and Latin America.

However, sources said Pertamina is working with bankers from Societe Generale on a takeover and could be willing to offer up to €19 (£16) a share for the company. The Indonesian group is said to be hungry for fresh oil and gas reserves because Indonesia became a net importer in 2004 following declining production from its maturing fields and growing consumption from its own economic growth.

At the end of last year Pertamina considered offering $23 (£15) a share for Aim-listed Coastal Energy, which has assets in the Gulf of Thailand, but dropped its bid after failing to agree a price acceptable to the London-listed company’s shareholders.

Pertamina did not respond to calls for comment. Maurel & Prom declined to comment.

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