South Korea’s POSCO International (PIC) has signed a binding scheme implementation agreement (SIA) to acquire all the shares of the Australian natural gas company Senex Energy.

The move comes a month after PIC proposed an improved takeover offer to acquire the firm.

According to a Senex Energy statement, PIC will buy Senex Energy shares for A$4.60 per share. This gives the deal a value of approximately $610.02m (A$852.1m), reported Reuters.

The scheme was unanimously approved by Senex’s board in the absence of any superior proposals. Senex said that an independent expert is also verifying that the deal is fair and in the best interests of the shareholders.

Senex chairman Trevor Bourne said: “Throughout our discussions with PIC, the Senex board has been focused on maximising value for our shareholders.

“The offer announced today, which is recommended by the board, reflects an attractive value for Senex and the opportunity for our shareholders to realise a certain cash price for their shares.”

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The completion of the transaction is subject to several conditions, including approval from shareholders, the court, and the foreign investment review board (FIRB).

Once all pre-conditions are met, the deal is expected to be completed in late March 2022.

Senex’s assets in the Surat and Bowen basins deliver an estimated 20 petajoules (PJ) of natural gas per year.

The company plans to pay a dividend of up to A$0.05 per share for the half year ending 31 December 2021, subject to final confirmation from the board. This approval is not conditional on the implementation of the scheme.

Senex has also signed a domestic gas sales agreement with Shell Energy Australia. As per the deal, the company will supply 8PJ of natural gas over four years starting next year.