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AWE Ltd. Swings to First-Half Profit After Selling Stake in Buru

Feb. 28 (Bloomberg) -- AWE Ltd., an oil and gas explorer planning to expand in Australia, New Zealand and Asia, swung to a first-half profit after it made a gain on the sale of its stake in Buru Energy Ltd. and oil prices rose.

Net income was A$29.7 million ($31.9 million), or 5.6 cents a share, in the six months ended Dec. 31, compared with a loss of A$49.8 million, 22.5 cents, a year ago, the Sydney-based company said today in a statement. Sales rose 17 percent to A$157.6 million.

AWE is seeking acquisitions in Asia and developing shale gas prospects in Western Australia after cutting estimates last year for the remaining reserves at its Tui oil field in New Zealand and reporting in 2010 that its drilling program had failed to deliver a major discovery. Crude oil in New York averaged $91.81 in the half, up 14 percent from the year before.

“AWE will continue to actively pursue investment in the energy industry,” according to the statement.

The result includes a A$12.2 million profit from selling shares in Buru Energy, the company said. The company last month agreed to pay $39 million to acquire two oil blocks off the Indonesian coast from Genting Bhd. and to assume $100 million in loans and receivables.

To contact the reporter on this story: James Paton in Sydney at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Amit Prakash at

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