ExxonMobil mulls $10.9-bn takeover of Gulf Keystone: report

The world's largest oil company Exxon Mobil Corp,  is mulling a $10.9-billion takeover of Gulf Keystone Petroleum, that focuses on oil exoloration in Iraq's Kurdistan region, The Independent on Sunday reported yesterday without citing its sources.

The report said that Texas-based Exxon is planning to offer 800 pence ($12.50 ) per share bid for UK's Gulf Keystone, which has made huge oil finds in the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region of Iraq.

According to the report though Exxon has "sounded out" Gulf Keystone about the possible deal, the British oil company would not accept an offer at the 800 pence per share level. Gulf Keystone currently has a market value of about $2.33 billion.

AIM-listed Gulf Keystone is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company with operations in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

Registered in Bermuda, Gulf Keystone Petroleum International (GKPI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Gulf Keystone, holds production sharing contracts (PSCs) for four exploration blocks in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

In November 2007, the company secured interests in the PSCs for the Shaikan and Akri-Bijeel blocks.