Aberdeen-based Offshore Hydrocarbon Mapping (OHM) saw its shares more than double in value yesterday after it unveiled a major investment in the firm.
The specialist in controlled-source electromagnetic (CSEM) surveys for the offshore oil and gas industry said Sector Asset Management, a Norwegian capital-management firm, would increase its interest from 1.24% to 24.15% by investing up to £3.36million.
Sector is to take up 21million new shares at 16p a share, representing a premium of about 220% to Wednesday’s close.
The new shares will be issued in two tranches, the first 3,475,000 under existing approvals, while shareholder approval at a meeting on April 28 will be required for the balance of 17,525,000.
OHM said funds of £556,000 received from the first tranche would largely provide working capital for the recently announced CSEM surveys in India. Net proceeds of about £2.7million from the second tranche would, if shareholder approval was obtained, be invested in further improvements in data-processing and interpretation technology, upgrading CSEM equipment, investment in sales and marketing activities and general working capital.
OHM chief executive Richard Cooper said: “I am very pleased to welcome Sector Asset Management as a significant shareholder.
“Sector is an experienced and sophisticated investor in the oil service arena with a track record of successful ventures in the upstream geophysical market.
“Already in 2010 we are experiencing increasing inquiries in both our marine CSEM survey business and our Rock Solid Images seismic business and this fundraising demonstrates Sector’s confidence in the group and its integrated data-interpretation offerings for clients.”
Sector is a specialist asset-management firm based in Oslo. Its clients are hedge funds and private-equity investors. It is part of the Sector Asset Management Group, which more than £1.3billion under discretionary management at June 30, 2009, across 16 funds.
Its investments in recent years have included Norway’s Multiwave Geophysical and Wavefield Inseis, both since sold to CGG Veritas.
OHM’s shares closed up 130% at 11.5p. Last month they slumped 25% after the company said it would have revenue of about £3.2million for the six months to February 28, about half the amount of a year earlier.
It also said it expected pre-tax losses for the period of £4.1-£4.4million compared with a £5.6million deficit the year before.