Petroceltic Gains Most in a Month on Algeria Sale: London Mover

Petroceltic International Plc, the Irish oil and gas company, gained the most in more than a month after selling part of its stake in an Algerian oil license.

The shares advanced as much as 3.1 percent, the most on an intraday basis since Aug. 28, and traded 2.4 percent higher at 147.50 pence as of 12:37 p.m. in London. The company was down 17 percent in the year through Friday, compared with an 11 percent gain on the 616-member FTSE All-Share Index.

Sonatrach, the Algerian state-owned oil company, plans to buy Petroceltic’s 18 percent stake in the Isarene Production Sharing Contract, which is tied to the Ain Tsila oil field, the Dublin-based explorer said in a statement. Petroceltic will receive $20 million on completion of the deal, a $140 million “development carry” and two further payments of $10 million once the venture meets certain milestones.

Petroceltic will hold 38 percent of the license if the deal is completed while Sonatrach will own 43 percent, according to the statement. Enel SpA, the Italian energy firm, will hold the remaining 18 percent.

“The decision by Sonatrach to exercise its pre-emptive right is a clear indication of the current value and long term upside potential of the Isarene asset,” Petroceltic Chief Executive Officer Brian O’Cathain said in the statement.

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