NZOG warns of low Zero share offer

17:53, Jan 13 2014

New Zealand Oil & Gas (NZOG) has warned it shareholders that the company is the latest to be targeted with a low-ball unsolicited share offer.

The exploration company told the NZX that Zero Commission NZ is making unsolicited offers to some shareholders to buy shares for 74 cents a share.

The offer is 10.3 per cent below yesterday's closing price for NZOG shares of 83.5c.

Zero Commission head Philip Briggs said it is not a low-ball offer and the company targets shareholders with only small holdings which are uneconomical to sell when factoring broker fees and commissions.

"This is all above board.We are not in the same boat as [controversial Australian investors] Washington Securities.

"We have been doing this for years, and many of the shareholders who work with us come out smilings," Briggs said.


Shareholders would be unsecured while awaiting payment from Zero Commission, Briggs said.

"They are investing in an oil and gas exploration company; they are pretty unsecured as it is," he said.

In 2011 the Financial Markets Authority ordered Zero Commission to include a detailed letter, outlining the terms and conditions of the below-market offer as well as including the market average for minimum brokerage fees, so small shareholders can compare.

Zero Commission made similar offers to Hellaby Holdings and Tourism Holdings shareholders in 2012 which were well below their respective share prices.

NZOG recommends shareholders seek independent advice and check the most recent NZX price for shares.

NZOG chief executive Andrew Knight said the company has an exciting exploration programme.

"The company is currently involved in drilling at Matuku, with further offshore Taranaki wells to follow at Oi and Pateke, within the producing Tui permit.

"We have new exploration permits off Canterbury and new partnerships that will help the company generate attractive returns and provide the opportunity for growth," he said.

Fairfax Media