Abu Dhabi: Aabar Petroleum Investments Company yesterday announced it had wrapped up the acquisition of Singapore-based Pearl Energy for about $550 million (Dh2 billion) by buying the remaining shares.

Pearl Energy will now become a fully-owned subsidiary of Aabar when it gets delisted from the Singapore exchange shortly. "The acquisition marks a key milestone in the development of Aabar as a leading E&P (exploration and production) company," said Sohail Al Mazrui, Chairman of Aabar.

"The total number of Pearl Energy shares owned, controlled or agreed to be acquired by Aabar and parties acting in concert with it and valid acceptances of Aabar's offer for Pearl Energy amounted to in aggregate 430,468,749 Pearl Energy shares. The shares represent approximately 97.04 per cent of the issued share capital of Pearl Energy as at May 26, 2006," he said in a statement.

The acquisition was carried out in several phases, the first of which was when Aabar entered into an option agreement in January 2006 to acquire 48.29 per cent of Pearl Energy's shares at a price of S$1.95 (circa Dh4.42) per share from Indonesia-based Austindo Group. Following that, Aabar announced on March 30 a cash offer to acquire all of the remaining shares of Pearl Energy.

"Following the close of the offer, Aabar intends to delist Pearl Energy from the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited and make Pearl Energy a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aabar," said Mazrui.

"With the acquisition, Aabar gains control of some 10 blocks (about 35,000 square kilometres) of exploration and production licences Pearl Energy held in Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.