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Bloomberg: Woodside Shares Rise to 52-Week High on Report of Shell Bid

By Dinakar Sethuraman

June 19 (Bloomberg) — Woodside Petroleum Ltd. shares rose to the highest in a year after a report that 34 percent shareholder Royal Dutch Shell Plc may bid for Australia’s second- biggest oil and gas producer.

The stock of the Perth-based company rose as much as A$1.23, or 2.7 percent, to A$47.18 on the Australian Stock Exchange, a 52-week high after LNG Intelligence said Shell may try again to buy the rest of the company. Woodside spokesman Roger Martin declined to comment on the report.

The Australian government in 2001 prevented Shell from increasing its stake in Woodside, citing national interest. Woodside is the operator of the North West Shelf Venture, which exports about 12 million tons of liquefied natural gas a year. It is also proposing to spend as much as A$10 billion ($8.4 billion) to develop its Pluto LNG project off Western Australia.

Shell may not act on any proposed offer before Australian general elections expected this year or early 2008, LNG Intelligence said. Shell may be able to ship more LNG to the U.S. if it gains control of Woodside, the report said.

Last week, U.K.-based broker Cazenove Group said that a merger of BG Group Plc and Woodside may benefit both companies.

LNG is natural gas chilled to liquid form for transportation by tanker to destinations not connected by pipeline.

Woodside shares were trading at A$46.46 at 1:15 p.m. in Sydney.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dinakar Sethuraman in Singapore at [email protected] .

Last Updated: June 18, 2007 23:17 EDT and its also non-profit sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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