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BowLeven Rises Most in Four Months on Takeover Speculation

BowLeven Plc, the U.K. oil explorer focusing on Cameroon, jumped the most in more than four months in London trading on speculation it may get a takeover offer.

BowLeven soared 21 percent, the biggest one-day gain since Feb. 17, to close at 70.75 pence, valuing the Edinburgh-based company at 208.5 million pounds ($322.8 million).

“There are rumors it could be a bid coming in,” Andrew Matharu, an analyst at Westhouse Securities Ltd., said after the Financial Times reported yesterday that BowLeven was subject to renewed takeover speculation. Its assets include the Etinde permit in Cameroon, where it raised resource estimates in March.

BowLeven has tumbled almost 50 percent since Feb. 28, when Dragon Oil Plc said it was no longer studying an offer for the company. The FTSE AIM All-Share Index, of which BowLeven is a member, has dropped 16 percent in the period.

“Equity prices have been depressed while the oil price is relatively high,” Matharu said today by telephone.

No one at BowLeven was available for comment.

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