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Ascent set for sharp descent after speculators kill Cadogan takeover

Ascent’s AIM quoted shares rose 658% since it was announced that Cadogan had made an approach, and was in early stage talks to buy the European ‘tight’ gas junior.

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Ascent was priced at 5.97p at Thursday’s close.

Cadogan Petroleum Plc’s (LON:CAD) proposed takeover of Ascent Resources Plc (LON:AST) collapsed because the former decided a deal would no longer be worth it.

Ascent’s AIM quoted shares rose 658% since it was announced that Cadogan had made an approach, and was in early stage talks to buy the European ‘tight’ gas junior.

The share was priced at 5.97p at Thursday’s close versus 0.93p on March 23, the day prior to Ascent’s announcement regarding the Cadogan approach.

In a stock market statement following Thursday’s stock market close Cadogan told investors that the Ascent price was now too high.

“Cadogan has conducted extensive due diligence on Ascent and the Petisovci Gas Project, however this share price rise has taken Ascent’s enterprise value above a level that Cadogan was prepared to consider for a potential transaction,” Cadogan said.

“As a result, Cadogan confirms that it does not intend to make an offer for Ascent.”

Ascent this morning confirmed it was no longer considered to be in an offer period, and it announced it had hired Stockdale Securities as its nominated advisor and sole broker with immediate effect.

The company also told investors that it continues to be confident that first gas in 2016 is ‘achievable’.

It added that it continues to anticipate award of a IPPC permit before the end of second quarter of 2016, though it acknowledged there is no guarantee that the court will award in Ascent’s favour.

“The company continues to have positive discussions to achieve first gas, independent of the IPPC permit,” Ascent said. “Based on progress made to date the board remains confident that first gas during 2016 is achievable.”

Quick facts: Ascent Resources PLC

Price: 2.83909 GBX

AIM:AST
Market: AIM
Market Cap: £1.68 m
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