Wednesday 20 September 2017

Falcon flying high after €25m raised in stock market listing

Peter Flanagan

Peter Flanagan

THE Irish Stock Exchange (ISE) was given a much needed boost yesterday, when a Dublin-based oil company began trading.

Falcon Oil & Gas, which has interests in Australia, South Africa and Hungary, raised €25m after it went public in Dublin and London.

It will trade on the ESM market for smaller companies in Dublin and the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in London.

Falcon is the first company to list on the Dublin exchange this year. The company placed just over 120 million shares as part of its fundraising, which will be used to develop part of its portfolio of licences.

By the close last night shares in the Canadian-Irish firm were worth 18c in Dublin and 14.25p in London.

The admission of Falcon to the ISE brings the number of companies quoted on the ESM market to 24. Falcon's ESM ticker symbol is FAC.

After the fundraising, Falcon has a market capitalisation of just over €131m.

Speaking at the ISE, Falcon chief executive Philip O'Quigley, said the capital raising would allow them to build on its portfolio of "unconventional" oil and gas assets.

"The ISE's international membership base and the facilitation of a euro quotation enables Falcon to attract euro-based private and institutional investors from Ireland and overseas.

"With our corporate location now firmly based in Dublin, a quotation in Ireland makes sense and should enhance the profile of Falcon among the international investment community," he said.

ISE boss Deirdre Somers said she was "delighted to welcome Falcon to the ISE's ESM market".

"The ISE's membership base includes a network of Irish and international investment banks and stockbroking firms which will facilitate the delivery of direct order flow and strong liquidity in Falcon's shares on the Irish market.

"We look forward to building a strong relationship with Falcon in the future."

Davy is acting as ESM adviser to Falcon.

Falcon is the latest pursuit of Belfast-educated oil and gas chairman John Craven.

Mr Craven, who made his name as chief executive of the Dublin firm Petroceltic, was most recently chairman of Cove Energy, which was sold last year for nearly €2bn, earning a windfall worth millions for him and his board of directors.

Substantial

Mr Craven has a substantial following among Irish investors.

Dolmen stockbrokers had assembled a number of investors in Cove, and most of them made a killing when Cove was bought by the Thai company PTT.

Chief executive Philip O'Quigley is a former executive at Providence Resources, which is searching for oil around Ireland.

Falcon is currently focused on shale gas plays in Australia and South Africa.

It is expected to farm down some of its acreage quite quickly, allowing a major firm to develop the plays, which cover millions of acres.

Irish Independent

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