Takeover Panel ruling on Salamander approach to Serica



    LONDON, Oct. 16 /CNW/ - Serica Energy plc (AIM & TSX-V: SQZ) ("Serica" or
"the Company") advises its shareholders that the Executive of the Takeover
Panel in London (the "Panel Executive") has made a ruling under the Takeover
Code (the "Code") that Salamander Energy plc ("Salamander") must by 5pm on
10 November 2008 either announce an offer for Serica or announce that it does
not intend to make an offer. The full text of the Panel's ruling, released on
16 October 2008, is shown below:
    "Following recent representations made by the advisers to Serica, the
Panel Executive has been considering the application of Rule 2.4(b) of the
Code to the approach by Salamander to Serica. Following discussions with all
parties' advisers, the Panel Executive has ruled that, unless the Panel
Executive consents otherwise, Salamander must, by 5.00 p.m. on 10 November
2008, either announce a firm intention to make an offer for Serica under Rule
2.5 of the Code or announce that it does not intend to make an offer for
Serica. In the event that Salamander announces that it does not intend to make
an offer for Serica, Salamander and any person acting in concert with it will,
except with the consent of the Panel Executive, be bound by the restrictions
contained in Rule 2.8 of the Code for six months from the date of such
announcement. Each of the parties has accepted this ruling." (See Explanatory
Note below)
    This ruling by the Panel follows a highly preliminary, non-binding
proposal (the "Proposal") from Salamander which was, as announced on
29 September 2008, unanimously rejected by the Board of Serica.
    The Proposal was to acquire Serica on the basis of Serica shareholders
receiving one new Salamander share for every three Serica shares currently
held. The Board of Serica unanimously concluded that the Proposal failed to
reflect both the underlying value and potential which exists in Serica or a
premium for control of the Company.
    Following the rejection of the Proposal by the Company, Serica's advisers
sought this ruling by the Panel in order to remove the uncertainty surrounding
the situation and ensure that Salamander makes its intentions clear.
    Paul Ellis, Serica CEO, said: "We welcome this ruling from the Takeover
Panel and hope that it brings a speedy resolution to this ill-advised approach
which grossly undervalues Serica's assets. We urge our shareholders to take no
action at this time."

    Explanatory Note

    The principal effect of Rule 2.8 of the Code is that, with certain
limited exceptions, if an offeror announces that it does not intend to make an
offer, neither the offeror nor any person acting in concert with the offeror
may announce an offer or possible offer for a further six months.

    
    The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept
    responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

    To receive Company news releases via email, please contact
    sasha@chfir.com and specify "Serica press releases" in the subject
    line.
    

    %SEDAR: 00022686E




For further information:

For further information: Serica Energy plc, Paul Ellis, Chief Executive
Officer, paul.ellis@serica-energy.com, +44 (0)20 7487 7300; Chris Hearne,
Finance Director, chris.hearne@serica-energy.com, +44 (0)20 7487 7300;
JPMorgan Cazenove, Steve Baldwin, steve.baldwin@jpmorgancazenove.com, +44
(0)20 7588 2828; Tristone Capital Limited, Majid Shafiq,
mshafiq@tristonecapital.com, +44 (0)20 7355 5872; Pelham Public Relations -
UK, James Henderson, james.henderson@pelhampr.com, +44 (0)20 7743 6673;
Alisdair Haythornthwaite, alisdair.haythornthwaite@pelhampr.com, +44 (0)20
7743 6676; CHF - Canada, Sasha Abrams, sasha@chfir.com, (416) 868-1079

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SERICA ENERGY PLC

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