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KenolKobil of Kenya Slumps to Eight-Month Low: Nairobi Mover

March 5 (Bloomberg) -- KenolKobil Ltd., a Kenyan fuel retailer with operations in nine African countries, plunged to the lowest level in more than eight months after it ended talks on Puma Energy BV’s planned acquisition of a controlling stake.

Shares slumped 9.6 percent to 12.20 shillings by 11:18 a.m. in Nairobi, the lowest intraday level since June 20. About 84,000 securities changed hands, 14 percent of the three-month daily average.

Negotiations were terminated, KenolKobil said in an e-mailed statement on March 1, without giving a reason. The company will pursue “strategic alternatives” to support its growth strategy across central, eastern and southern Africa, Managing Director Jacob Segman said in the statement. The stock market was closed yesterday as Kenyans voted in presidential elections.

“There was some speculative buying expecting the transaction would go ahead at a substantial premium to the market price and now without the transaction there could be some selling,” Eric Musau, a research analyst at Nairobi-based Standard Investment Bank Ltd., said in a phone interview.

KenolKobil began talks with Puma, the Geneva-based downstream and storage unit of Trafigura Beheer BV, in May and the company’s “key” shareholders signed an agreement to sell their majority stake. Puma said it would offer to buy 100 percent of the company after due diligence and regulatory approval.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Ombok in Nairobi at eombok@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net

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