Lasmo attacks Enterprise Oil's 'dismal' record

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The Independent Online
LASMO yesterday attacked Enterprise Oil's exploration record in a second defence document in four days against its rival's pounds 1.4bn takeover bid, writes Russell Hotten.

The document depicts Enterprise as a company in decline and lacking in focus. It says Enterprise's oil reserves have halved while discovery costs have soared.

Rudolph Agnew, Lasmo's chairman, said that last year Enterprise spent pounds 67m to drill 2.6 net wells, pounds 25.8m per well, and that despite participating in 80 wells in the 1990s, there was only one significant discovery.

'It is a record of success in the UK in the 1980s, followed by decline in the 1990s,' said Mr Agnew. 'Its international record has been dismal throughout.'

The document highlights what it claims is a volte-face on Enterprise's plans to create a combined business with a diverse portfolio and interests in 26 countries.

Graham Hearne, Enterprise's chief executive, said his company's finding costs were lower on average than Lasmo's.