End of the line for BG Group

Company will no longer be listed on the London Stock Exchange as of Monday.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |   Feb. 11, 2016 at 8:49 AM
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LONDON, Feb. 11 (UPI) -- BG Group announced its shares will be suspended on the London Stock Exchange at the close of trading Friday as part of its merger with Royal Dutch Shell.

Nearly two decades after it was created, BG will no longer trade in London as it becomes absorbed into Royal Dutch Shell. The company said a high court in the United Kingdom sanctioned the financial mechanisms necessary to delist.

Helge Lund, BG's last full-serving chief executive, said thanks should go to employees and contractors for 19 years of service to the independent company.

"They should feel proud of what they have achieved with the company," he said in a statement.

Trading in BG will be suspended after the conclusion of Friday's session. Full delisting will be implemented Monday.

More than 99 percent of the shareholders in BG Group last month backed the combination with Royal Dutch Shell. More than 80 percent of Shell's shareholders voted in favor for a $7 billion merger that is the largest of its kind since Exxon and Mobil joined in the 1990s.

BG Group last week issued its last report ahead of the merger, recording a pre-tax profit of $2.97 billion, against a loss of $2.3 billion in 2014. Lund, who moves aside after the merger is completed, said the company was shielded against slumping crude oil prices because of lower operating costs and the addition of low-cost production from Brazil and Australia.

Shell said combining with BG Group would mark the start of a new chapter for the company as it builds its portfolio with emerging assets of liquefied natural gas. Costs will move lower by about $4 billion for 2016, but also result in widespread redundancies. About 10,000 staff and director contractor positions will be eliminated across both companies, however.

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