London Stock Exchange Eyes Aberdeen Oil and Gas
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Rosalie Chadwick

The London Stock Exchange (LSE) is forecasting Aberdeen’s booming energy sector will be the source of a new wave of companies heading for an Initial Public Offering (IPO).

Renewed confidence and a swathe of foreign investment from South Korea, China and other first-time North Sea entrants has had a knock-on effect on E&P and oil and gas services companies.

This newfound vibrancy has directly influenced the LSE’s decision to hold an IPO Forum in Aberdeen this month (Thursday, October 31) bringing together a team of leading capital markets, fund management, accounting and legal experts.

Supported by PwC, legal firm Pinsent Masons and Cenkos Securities, the event is aimed at chairmen, chief executives, chief financial officers and other business leaders who are considering taking their companies to the market.

It will feature seasoned investment banking, fund management, accounting and legal experts and will also hear from highly respected entrepreneurs who have invaluable first-hand experience of raising capital on the Stock Exchange and life at the helm of a listed company.

Wood Group chairman Allister Langlands will discuss the benefits and pitfalls of life as a listed company, while Bruce Dingwall, chairman of Trinity Exploration & Production, will contrast his time at Venture Production, which listed on the LSE in 2002, and his current experience at Trinity.

Pinsent Masons Partner and Co-head of Capital Markets, Rosalie Chadwick, said, “The Stock Exchange has identified a number of potential IPO candidates in Aberdeen – companies which boast the key components regulators and investors look for in a listed company. Those qualities are top class management teams, strong internal controls, sound financials and excellent growth prospects.

“There are also certain core sectors the Stock Exchange view as well suited to the capital markets and oil and gas E&P and services companies have traditionally ticked these boxes.

“Another reason for the LSE's focus on Aberdeen is the wealth of top quality private equity backed companies in the region. Much of the increased IPO activity in 2013 has come from PE-driven exits because of the good returns currently available. An IPO could assist companies in achieving the balancing act of satisfying original investors whilst giving the business the capital and profile to take a step up to the next level.”  

Chadwick said for any business considering an IPO, preparation is absolutely vital and the IPO Forum will assist participants in determining whether a Listing is appropriate for their business requirements and consistent with their long-term strategic goals.

She added, “A thorough spring clean and putting in place a structure which will withstand the scrutiny of potential investors is key - whether that be securing key contracts and individuals or ensuring that financial controls and systems are sufficiently robust. During the process leading up to going to the market, this is something that advisors and investors look at very carefully.

“The bottom line is IPOs are very much an option for the right company just now and the capital markets are most certainly open for business.”

The IPO Forum is supported by the London Stock Exchange Group, PwC, Pinsent Masons and Cenkos Securities and will be held at Pinsent Masons LLP, 13 Queen’s Road, Aberdeen, on Thursday 31 October, 2013.

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