(Adds Exillon's response, analyst comment, updates shares)
March 21 Russian oil producer Exillon Energy Plc
said its chief executive, chairman and three other
board members had resigned, saying they could not work without
the support of the directors nominated by its largest
shareholder, Alexei Khotin.
Shares in Exillon, whose oilfields are located in northern
Russia and western Siberia, fell as much as 24 percent on the
London Stock Exchange on Friday.
Billionaire Khotin got two of his nominees named to the oil
producer's board in January after one of the companies
controlled by him said it could make a bid for Exillon.
"We were informed by Exillon's CEO Mark Martin that he was
no longer able to exercise practical control over the company's
operations and assets without the support of the newly appointed
directors," Chairman David Herbert said in a statement.
Exillon declined to provide additional details.
The two Khotin-affiliated directors, Alexander Suchkov and
Sergey Koshelenko, intend to appoint RusOil Deputy CEO Pavel
Chernienko to Exillon's board.
Khotin is also the beneficial owner of the RusOil Group.
"Clearly, the concern for minority investors is that the
familiar faces of the past are no longer with the company and
there is little certainty over quite how things will proceed in
the months ahead," Mirabaud Securities analysts wrote in a note.
The brokerage, however, said Khotin's clout in Russia may
benefit the company in the longer term.
Exillon's shareholder list has seen considerable churn since
December, when founder and largest shareholder Kazakh
businessman - Maksat Arip - sold his stake to Khotin.
Exillon's shares were down 19 percent at 118 pence at 1445
(Reporting by Karen Rebelo in Bangalore; Editing by Savio
D'Souza and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)