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BG Group makes A$13.8 billion hostile bid for Origin

Tuesday 24th June 2008

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BG Group made a hostile A$13.8 billion takeover bid for Origin Energy, the Australian utility that controls Contact Energy, to gain control of its oil, gas and electricity assets.

The A$15.50 cash offer is the same amount that Origin's board rejected in May after the two companies disagreed on the need to revalue gas reserves. Origin stock rose to as much as a record A$16.34 today.

Contact, whose stock rose 2.8% to NZ$8.46, said it is reviewing BG Group's bid for its 51.4% shareholder and hasn't received any non-public information on the proposal.

BG Group, a UK oil and gas producer, said it would use its own reserves and a syndicated loan from a group including Banco Santander, HSBC Bank Plc, Societe Generale and Royal Bank of Scotland.

The takeover is conditional on BG Group gaining at least 50.1% of Origin.

BG Group's advisers are Goldman Sachs, Gresham Advisory Partners, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley Australia.

By Jonathan Underhill

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