Talisman hunts for buyers

Talisman Energy is set to pull the curtains on its Australian adventure after appointing advisers to find buyers for stakes in the Laminaria and Kitan oilfields.

Three years after a proposed exit failed when Talisman could not find buyers for the two assets, the $US10.2 billion Canada-based company has asked Miro Advisors to complete the deal.

Talisman's target date to achieve its Australian exit remains unclear. It is widely expected that the Laminaria and Kitan stakes will be sold separately.

The exit will come almost a decade after Talisman acquired an Australian beachhead through its 2005 takeover of the Roy Franklin-run Paladin Resources.

Mr Franklin soon after joined the Santos board and remains a non-executive director

Asia-Pacific is one of Talisman's core growth regions, contributing about a third of group production, but Laminaria and Kitan are not considered core.

Talisman's stakes in Laminaria and the adjoining Corallina field are 40.1 per cent and 33.3 per cent, respectively. The oil project is operated by Woodside Petroleum and owns one of the world's biggest floating production, storage and offtake vessels, the Northern Endeavour.

Part-ownership of the Northern Endeavour is considered the key attraction of Talisman's stake in Laminaria-Corallina, which according to Woodside averages production of about 5000 barrels per day.

Talisman's 25 per cent stake in Kitan, an Eni-operated oil development in the Australia-East Timor Joint Petroleum Development Area, is also non-core. Talisman has spoken of production of up to 11,000 barrels a day achieved at Kitan in 2012.

Miro's Talisman gig comes as the Tim Woodall-run advisory gets close to securing a buyer for the Roc Oil-led Basker Manta Gummy gas project off Victoria.

The West Australian

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