AWE will also provide the opportunity for eligible shareholders to participate in an additional capital raising via a Share Purchase Plan ("SPP").
The Placement of 38,632,951 fully paid ordinary shares was completed today and raises approximately $64 million at a price of A$1.68 per share. Shareholder approval is not required for the Placement as the issue falls within the "15% of the Company's issued capital in 12 months" limit imposed by ASX Listing Rule 7.1.
Use Of Funds
The issue of new equity capital will provide the Company with flexibility in its funding for the Tui development in New Zealand, Trefoil feasibility study, the anticipated accelerated exploration activity in the Otway and Taranaki Basins, New Venture opportunities and working capital.
Recent successes at Tui/Amokura/Pateke, Martha and Trefoil have increased the requirement for further equity capital to appropriately fund the future growth of the Company. These successes, combined with AWE's BassGas and Cliff Head assets, provide shareholders with a diversified portfolio of cornerstone assets to fuel the Company's strong growth profile.
The capital raising allows AWE to participate in these exciting growth projects and crystallise the upside in revenue and profits for the benefit of all shareholders.
The Share Purchase Plan
AWE is also planning to offer shareholders the opportunity to acquire additional shares in the Company via the SPP. The SPP will provide all shareholders registered at 7pm on 20 December 2004 and with a registered address in Australia and New Zealand, the opportunity to subscribe for up to $5,000 worth of ordinary shares in the Company. The shares issued under the SPP will be offered at the Placement price of A$1.68 per share.
Details of the SPP will be released and sent to shareholders in the near future.
Commenting on the raising, AWE's Managing Director Mr. Bruce Phillips said:
"After our recent successes in New Zealand and at Trefoil-1, we are delighted that our existing institutional shareholders have supported the Company in this capital raising, with demand for the shares far exceeding the size of the Issue.
"Your Board believes that the Company has never been so well positioned to deliver upon its growth plans and shareholder return aspirations.
"We now look forward to providing details of the Share Purchase Plan to allow our smaller shareholders the opportunity to participate in acquiring new shares in AWE at the same price as the institutional investors."
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