BOWLEVEN shareholders may have to wait some time for material payouts following the successful campaign by a rebel investor for a boardroom purge, analysts have warned.
Chief executive Kevin Hart and four other directors left the board of Edinburgh-based Bowleven yesterday after shareholders voted for their removal at a general meeting. Two new directors were appointed.
The votes came after Monaco-based Crown Ocean Capital called for the removal of all bar one of Bowleven’s directors. It said Bowleven should be transformed into a holding company which could return excess cash to shareholders.
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Bowleven has around $95 million (£77m) cash and interests in the Etinde and Bomono licences in Cameroon.
Crown Ocean has said Bowleven should focus on its 20 per cent interest in Etinde.
In a note headed “Simple in theory harder in practice”, analysts at Barclays said material cash returns by Bowleven were unlikely to be imminent. Bowleven has limited spending commitments but it may be hard to assess how much the company should retain in connection with Etinde.
“A buy-back or equivalent process returning significantly more than the $10m proposed last year … could weaken Bowleven’s negotiating position if it is pursuing an early exit from Etinde,” wrote the analysts.
A resolution to have Bowleven’s chairman, Billy Allan, voted off the board was defeated at Tuesday’s general meeting.
Mr Hart remains chief executive, without having a seat on the board.
Bowleven’s chief operating officer David Clarkson remains on the board.