Ireland's Tullow Oil has agreed a $500 million takeover of Johannesburg-listed Energy Africa to form one of the biggest oil firms focused in west Africa.
The companies said today more than 90 per cent of Energy Africa shareholders had accepted Tullow's offer of $4.8346 a share, payable in rand.
Tullow added it would raise around $212.5 million in a share placing to help fund the takeover.
The deal will combine two businesses of similar size focused on West Africa and the North Sea. Tullow added that the enlarged group would also have a production capacity of over 50,000 barrels of oil per day.
Tullow operates in the southern North Sea and south Asia but its main producing asset is the Espoir field in Ivory Coast, West Africa.
Energy Africa had proven and probable oil and gas reserves of 57.9 million barrels of oil equivalent at the end of 2003 and produced 8.1 million that year. Its African operations include Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Congo.
Energy Africa is 56.5 per cent-owned by Engen, a South African firm that is 80 per cent held by Malaysia's Petronas.