Rebels back down

A group of shareholders in Ithaca Energy has backed down after calling for the North Sea oil and gas operator to appoint new directors.

JEC Capital Partners and Anthion Master Fund claimed last month that the company’s board had stagnated and wanted two independent directors appointed, but Ithaca said yesterday they had withdrawn their request for a shareholder meeting to discuss the proposal.

Ithaca said JEC and Anthion had also agreed not to oppose the operator’s acquisition of smaller rival Valiant Petroleum for £203million. This, the operator said, would allow Ithaca to continue with execution of its strategy to build long-term shareholder value.