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Noble Group puts final amount from sale of US gas and power unit at US$168m

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In an open letter to Noble's creditors, Iceberg urged them to reject the debt-for-equity swap. Instead, creditors should use the threat of liquidation to demand tougher conditions to safeguard their interests, Iceberg reasoned.

COMMODITY trader Noble Group on Monday said the final amount paid by Mercuria Energy America Inc for its indirect wholly-owned subsidiary, Noble Americas Gas & Power Corp (NAGP), stands at US$168 million, higher than the US$102 million announced earlier.

In October, Noble said it had sold NAGP to Mercuria for US$102 million, less than the US$261 million expected earlier because of changes in working capital and amounts placed in escrow.

In a filing with the Singapore Exchange on Monday, Noble said that following the closing of the disposal on Sept 29, 2017, the final consideration was higher at approximately US$168 million after being "subject to adjustment according to the terms and conditions of the stock purchase agreement."

This final amount includes US$20 million which remains deposited with the escrow agent.

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The disposal of NAGP is one of the many assets that Noble sold off last year in order to reduce its debts. As of Sept 30, 2017, Noble had debt of US$3.5 billion, but its cash and short-term deposits (excluding cash balances with future brokers) fell to US$256 million, from US$467 million three months before.

It also reported a net loss of US$1.2 billion for the three months to Sept 30, largely owing to write-downs for net fair-value losses related to the sale of its businesses.

In December last year, the company also announced that it will be disposing its US-based ethanol producer, Noble Americas South Bend Ethanol (Nasbe), to Mercuria Investments - a unit of Mercuria Energy - for a base consideration of US$15.5 million, US$3 million higher than its previous offer from Zeeland Farm Services.

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