Canadian Oil Sands firmly against Suncor's 'substantially undervalued bid'

CALGARY -- Canadian Oil Sands is continuing its efforts to fend off a hostile takeover by Suncor, telling shareholders again Monday that their interests will be "best served" in the long run if the company remains independent.

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The Calgary-based company (TSX:COS) noted that Suncor has given Canadian Oil Sands shareholders until Friday to accept its all-stock offer and advises them to hold onto their shares.

Canadian Oil Sands -- the largest partner in the Syncrude oilsands operation -- has repeatedly said an independent COS will provide its shareholders with a better opportunity to profit from a return to higher oil prices.

"Suncor's substantially undervalued bid is set to lapse, and when it does they say they will walk away. For all of us, as shareholders, this scenario reveals a far more compelling and valuable alternative: Independence," COS said Monday.

Suncor (TSX:SU) has argued that with oil prices expected to remain low for some time, the status quo is risky for COS shareholders and they'd be better off as shareholders in a larger energy company.

The all-stock Suncor bid values Canadian Oil Sands at about $4.3 billion as of Dec. 31.

Suncor (TSX:SU) took its offer directly to COS shareholders on Oct. 5 after attempts to ink a friendly deal -- at a higher price -- were rebuffed by Canadian Oil Sands in the spring.

Both companies are partners in the massive Syncrude oilsands mine north of Fort McMurray, Alta. -- Suncor with 12 per cent and COS with 37 per cent.

Suncor is one of Canada's biggest energy companies, with vast holdings in the oilsands and thousands of employees. COS, on the other hand, has a staff of about 30 and relies on its Syncrude stake as its sole asset.



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