The company was formerly a wholly owned subsidiary of Japanese resources conglomerate IB Daiwa, whose stake in the business is now diluted to 41.7 per cent.
The initial public offering (IPO) raised Leed Petroleum £48.9 million before expenses at a placing price of 47p per share. In addition to paying off a portion of the company’s existing debts, the proceeds will be used to begin drilling in oilfields in the Gulf of Mexico that were acquired by IB Daiwa after it bought Leed in December 2005, including the Eugene Island Block and Grand Isle.
Leed is also eyeing fresh acquisitions in the Gulf of Mexico. These may come in the form of under-exploited assets it can pick up cheaply from multinationals, or partnerships with larger oil and gas companies to jointly develop reserves that would otherwise be neglected.
Howard Wilson, Leed’s chief executive, comments: ‘Admission to trading on AIM marks an important new stage in our development.
‘Our current daily production is expected to rapidly increase as we commence our development programme, and we see further growth through a number of opportunities aligned with our acquisition strategy.’
Matrix Corporate Capital acted as nominated adviser and broker to Leed Petroleum during the IPO.