Friendly takeover of Bankers Petroleum gets Investment Canada approval

CALGARY – Bankers Petroleum Ltd. (TSX:BNK) has received approval under the Investment Canada Act for a friendly takeover by affiliates of China-based Geo-Jade Petroleum Corp.

The offer values Calgary-based Bankers at $575 million, excluding debt obligations.

Under the proposal, Bankers would maintain a corporate and technical headquarters in Calgary and operational offices in Albania, Hungary and Romania.

The company says the deal, which was approved by Investment Canada, still requires the green light from the Chinese State Administration of Foreign Exchange. The companies expect to receive SAFE’s approval within weeks and for the deal to close in July.

David French, president and CEO of Bankers, said when the takeover offer was announced in March that the deal would provide Bankers with resources to accelerate activity in Albania and provide its shareholders with a premium price.

The offer is worth $2.20 per Bankers share in cash, about double the pre-announcement closing price of $1.11 per share. The stock closed Tuesday at $2.

Each side has agreed to pay US$20 million to the other under certain circumstances if the deal doesn’t go through.