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Oryx Seeks C$350 Million in Canada IPO

Addax & Oryx Group Ltd., the energy firm established in 1987 by billionaire Jean Claude Gandur, plans to raise about C$350 million ($346 million) in a Canadian initial public offering for its oil exploration business in Africa, according to two people familiar with the sale.

Oryx Petroleum Corp. Ltd. plans to sell shares next month, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the terms aren’t public. The Calgary-based company filed documents with Canadian regulators last month for the IPO, which is led by Royal Bank of Canada, Barclays Plc and Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Oryx Petroleum holds stakes in license areas in Iraq and West Africa, according to a March 13 filing. The company was founded in 2010 by Addax & Oryx and members of the former senior management team of Addax Petroleum Corp., an exploration and production unit sold to China’s Sinopec Group in 2009.

Gandur said in a February interview that he planned to sell shares to the public for Oryx Petroleum and list on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

An e-mail message to Craig Kelly, chief financial officer of Oryx Petroleum, wasn’t immediately returned.

Gandur worked in the Zug, Switzerland, office of Philipp Brothers before setting up a Geneva oil-trading firm named after two types of African antelope, the addax and oryx.

Oryx Petroleum would be the largest IPO of Canadian-listed energy company since Gibson Energy Inc. raised C$500 million in June 2011, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Companies raised $509 million in IPOs in the first quarter in Canada, the slowest start since 2011. Initial share sales of energy firms and mining companies have slumped while IPOs for real estate investment trusts surged on investor demand.

The three-month period had only one mining IPO, Loma Vista Capital Inc.’s $245,000 sale, making it the slowest quarter for mining IPOs since at least 2008, Bloomberg data show.

Energy IPOs have also been scarce, with just two oil-and-gas companies with initial sales in Canada last year, including Argent Energy Trust’s C$212.3 million offering in August.

The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Energy Index has dropped 4 percent in the past two days as oil capped its biggest two-day drop since October on concerns of slowing U.S. growth.

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