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Seismic surveyor PGS cancels debt refinancing plan, shares plunge

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OSLO (Reuters) – PGS, the world’s largest seismic surveyor, called off a planned debt refinancing on Wednesday amid rising market volatility, sending its shares down 24%.

Oslo-listed PGS, which owns a fleet of seismic vessels that scan the seabed for buried hydrocarbons and sells the data to oil and gas explorers, had announced its intention on May 27 to raise debt of $675 million (£537.4 million) as part of its refinancing.

“As a result of increased volatility in the capital markets and weaker investor sentiment toward oil field service post-launch, PGS has not been able to reach the targeted terms and has decided to withdraw the proposed transaction,” it said.

The price of Brent crude has fallen by more than 10% since the company announced its refinancing plans.

PGS said it still intended to refinance the debt facilities this year, and reduce its net debt as it expected to generate positive cash flows helped by an expected market recovery.

PGS shares initially fell by 24% following the announcement and traded down 16% by 0852 GMT, while the European oil and gas index was broadly flat.

(Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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