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Anton Oilfield soars after Schlumberger takes stake
HONG KONG |
HONG KONG (Reuters) - Shares of Anton Oilfield Services Group (3337.HK) jumped as much as 15 percent on Monday after North American oilfield services and equipment company Schlumberger Ltd (SLB.N) acquired about 20.1 percent of the Hong Kong-listed Chinese firm.
Shares of Anton Oilfield, one of the few privately controlled domestic oilfield service companies operating in China, rose as much as 15.3 percent to HK$1.73, beating a 0.5 percent drop in the benchmark Hang Seng Index .HSI. The stock was at HK$1.65 per share as of 10.55 p.m. EDt on Sunday, still up 10 percent.
Beijing-based Anton did not say how much Schlumberger paid for the 423,361,944 shares it acquired.
Based on its total market capitalization of $408 million as of Friday's close, the stake was worth about $80 million.
Following the news, Mirae Asset Securities Research on Monday raised its price target for Anton to HK$2 from HK$1.6 while maintaining its "buy" rating, citing Anton's "superior earnings growth".
"This is a vote of confidence in Anton's technical abilities, corporate governance and market positioning in the fast-growing Chinese market," Mirae Asset said in a note to clients.
"Schlumberger's backing should help Anton solidify its reputation as one of China's leading oilfield service providers and boost long-term revenue and profit growth prospects."
Anton Oilfield, which was founded in 1999 and now has about 1,000 employees, said it first entered into a strategic cooperation agreement with Schlumberger in 2010 in drilling fluids and well-cementing services.
Anton Oilfield said Schlumberger would not be involved in the management of Anton and its cooperation with other business partners would remain unchanged.
(Reporting By Anne Marie Roantree and Charlie Zhu; Editing by Chris Gallagher)
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