Fairhaven to float 'exotic' offshore oil and gas arm

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The Independent Online
OGC INTERNATIONAL, the Aberdeen-based offshore oil and gas engineer, is to be floated off from its parent, Fairhaven International.

Fairhaven which is 70 per cent-owned by Fred Olsen, the Norwegian shipping tycoon, said 40 per cent of OGC would be offered through a placing and offer for sale.

Industry observers expect OGC to be floated with a market capitalisation higher than its parent's current value of pounds 60m.

Philip Stephens, a director of UBS Phillips & Drew, which is advising Fairhaven, said the shares were difficult to market not only because 70 per cent of the company was owned by one shareholder, but also because it was perceived as exotic on account of its status as a Bermuda-registered holding company

Fairhaven declared a dollars 4m rise in pre-tax profits to dollars 18.1m (pounds 12m) in 1992. The bulk of that came from OGC, which made pounds 10.5m on sales of pounds 226.5m.

OGC's finance director, Doug Gill, said that prospects for the company were very bright as the big oil companies moved to extend the life of their North Sea rigs.

He added that the company would look to penetrate the onshore market from a base in England after flotation.

Fairhaven's chairman, James Davidson, said that the changes in petroleum revenue tax announced in the Budget would benefit the group, as they would mean more emphasis on maintenance and modification work in the North Sea.

Fairhaven is doubling its dividend to 0.8 cents on earnings per share of 4.4 cents. The shares rose a penny to 25.25p.