Ellison moves on AWE

CHRIS Ellison’s Mineral Resources has decided if it is for a penny with ownership of the small Red Gully gas field in the Perth Basin, it may as well get in for a pound, launching a takeover offer for oil and gas producer AWE to spoil a rival Chinese bid.

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The Sydney-based AWE, which owns half of the giant new Waitsia discovery near Dongara in the Mid West region, has been circled by China Energy Reserve and Chemical Group, which lobbed a A73c off-market all cash offer on Friday morning, prompting MinRes to respond with a rival offer.

MinRes, which had run the ruler over Origin Energy’s Perth Basin assets last year, has made an all-scrip offer of one MinRes share for every AWE shares held, with a value of 80c.

The offer, to be effected via a scheme of arrangement, does not require due diligence, with MinRes saying it had concluded significant due diligence into the Waitsia and Beharra Springs assets in 2016, and had spent the past few weeks trying to better understand the AWE business specifically.

AWE is selling out ...