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Key Hurricane investor meeting delayed after postal disruption

WEST of Shetland-focused Hurricane Energy is facing complications as a result of strike action launched by Royal Mail workers.

The oil and gas firm is seeking investor approval for a plan under which it could return up to $70 million (£62m) to shareholders early next year.

However, Hurricane said the meeting to consider the plan has been rescheduled from December 14 to January 11.

Hurricane told investors: “It has come to the Company’s attention that part of the mailing of the Company’s notice of its General Meeting to be held on 14 December 2022 was delayed by the industrial action of Royal Mail employees affecting collections on 25 November 2022, such that certain shareholders have not been provided with sufficient notice of the meeting.”

It added: “In order to ensure that proper notice is provided and in light of the likely impact of additional forthcoming postal strike action … the Company considers it prudent to reschedule the General Meeting.”

The company put itself up for sale last month after receiving a takeover offer that valued it at more than £150m. Directors said if the process did not result in a transaction it would return up to $70m to shareholders in the first quarter of 2023.

Shares in Hurricane Energy ended the day up 0.39% at 7.74p.

Hurricane has insufficient distributable reserves to make payouts on that scale. However, the company has plenty of capital, including $822.5m held in a share premium account. It is seeking approval to make a transfer to its distributable reserves to facilitate payouts.

Hurricane made promising finds West of Shetland but faced big challenges during the slump triggered by the pandemic. It has enjoyed a dramatic improvement in its trading fortunes following the surge in oil prices fuelled by the recovery from the pandemic and Russia’s war on Ukraine.

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