Oil firms see slump in market value

INDEPENDENT oil explorers saw their market value hit last year, a new league table compiled by Deloitte has revealed.

The market capitalisation of the UK’s 25 biggest companies in the sector fell from £32.2bn in 2010 to £27.8bn. The fall came as investors shied away from projects viewed as risky amid volatile world markets.

However Deloitte’s research – which includes a table of the top 25 – said that projects in East Africa were benefiting the likes of Cove Energy which operates in Mozambique and Tanzania and has become an acquisition target for hell.

Cove is now 13th on the list with a market value of £326m. The table is led by Tullow Oil which has a value of £12.6bn.

Cairn Energy took second place at £3.7bn with Premier Oil next on £1.6bn.

The top three are the same as the previous year and Ophir Energy, with a value of £929m is the only new entrant, in at number six.

Deloitte’s Ian Sperling-Tyler said that the outlook for private equity investment was strong in 2012.