China Energy makes $430m takeover bid for AWE gas

China Energy Reserve and Chemical Group Australia has made a $430 million takeover offer for Sydney-based gas company AWE.
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The Chinese-owned firm has made an unsolicited, non-binding, indicative and conditional proposal at 71 cents a share.

AWE’s board has not rejected the offer, but said “its initial reaction is that the indicative proposal is not sufficiently attractive to provide access to due diligence”.

The Chinese company’s offer is a 31 per cent premium on AWE’s Wednesday closing price of 54 cents a share. The proposal also includes shares issued under AWE’s current Share Purchase Plan, which is slated to run until 14 December.

Whilst above the market price, the offer is well below recent analyst valuations, which have strenghtened recently due to AWE’s Waitsia project’s 78 per cent increase in proven and probable reserves to 811 petajoules.

RBC Capital Markets has placed a valuation of 91 cents a share for AWE, an upgrade from its previous valuation of 68 cents a share.

Its analyst Ben Wilson concurred with the board’s assessment of the offer.

“While any bid from a company associated with [China Energy parent China National Petroleum Corporation] must be taken seriously, we think the bid pricing needs to be higher to engage the board and major shareholders,” Mr Wilson said.

“This could be an exercise in price discovery from the bidding party and an attempt to compel the board to engage with major shareholders, particularly if more hedge funds come on the register.”

He said a recent share offer in AWE had been well taken up by long-term existing shareholders, “which suggests shareholders may not be easily budged particularly given the strong progress made on delineating a large Waitsia gas resource.”

Mr Wilson also stated that obtaining Foreign Investment Review Board approvals would be difficult due to the potential importance of Waitsia to Western Australia.

“We think FIRB approval could be a major issue given the source of the bid and the emerging status of Waitsia as an important strategic asset within the WA domestic gas market,” he said.

However, Fat Prophets’ analyst David Lennox said the perception in the market was that AWE had missed the LNG boom, and this approach may be an appropriate offer.

“It’s always been viewed as a sleepy hollow, rightly or wrongly,” Mr Lennox said.

“They’ve stuck at the Perth Basin, at the Waitsia field, and it looks like it is paying off now.

“At this sort of price, one would suggest it’s a good offer.”

This is the third takeover bid for AWE in four years.

In May last year, it rejected an unsolicited $421 million cash takeover proposal from US private equity fund Lone Star Funds.

Senex also made a cash and share offer for AWE in 2013.

Mr Wilson said continued interest in acquiring control of AWE reinforces his firm’s positive outlook on the Waitsia asset.

AWE has appointed UBS Australia as a financial advisor and Allens as its legal advisor.

AWE’s share price shot up 19 per cent to 65 cents by mid-morning.

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Next step in Newcastle’s tourist trade

NEW ERA: Gus Maher, a former Hunter Valley Wine & Tourism Association leader, is the new general manager of the Newcastle Tourism Industry Group. Picture: Simone De Peak
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HE led the first trips for tour behemoth Contiki into new nations including New Zealand and the United States, but Gus Maher is now turning his attention to helping Newcastle tourism take the next step.

The Hunter Valley Events doyen,63, has stepped in as the Newcastle Tourism Industry Group’s general manager, and says the next five years will be pivotal in bringing the city’s new tools for tourism online.

“It’s not like Newcastle is trying to find itself,” Mr Maher said. “Newcastle has indeed found itself froma tourism and visitor economy perspective.”

“I think at the moment we are recognised for a whole lot of diverse things that can add up to a very large sum.

“I think our diversity is already there.”

Mr Maher pointed to aboom in infrastructure as a guide to the city’s next steps, including the mooted beginning of international flightsout of Williamtown.

“The cruise terminal will open soon and that’s from a period of hard work in the last five years,” he said.

“If you look at wherethe airport was 10 years ago, we are in an unbelievable space now.What we’ve got to do in the next five is capitalise on all of it.”

Mr Maher said he saw the next stage as broadening the city’s definition oftourism to fully value visitors drawn here formedical appointments, education and business travel as well as visiting friends and relatives.

In turn, he said that would increase literacy about exactly what served as a drawcard for eachbreed of traveller.

“The first thing I’d like to do is better engage the local industry and have everyone who benefits from the broadness of the visitor economy understand that and work as a team to promote the city,” he said.

“I’d like everyone to know it’s not just about camera-toting international visitors, it’s anyone who comes here.”

Mr Maher described Supercars asan “easy” tourism win but flagged plans to talk with traders whose trade was down,suggesting afood truck alley as a way to offset lost foot traffic.

“Now we know what [Supercars weekend] looks like, let’s redraw the picture a little bit,” he said.

Home of the week: Renovated family home in Narrabundah

This tastefully renovated family home perfectly balances form with function. Inside, the living areas set in a spacious open-plan design.
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Timber floorboards and pale colours enhance the crisp modern lines of the interior, while sun streams in through the large windows, thanks to the careful orientation of the design.

The modern kitchen will take your breath away. Alongside acres of bench space, the facility boasts modern appliances, stone benchtops and a servery window.

An azure pool and deck space make the home a perfect place for summer family living. Set in a spacious backyard living area, the space is perfect to relax on a long lazy evening.

Fully renovated, the home is laid out across a single level. An additional living space offers flexibility, with the capacity to be adapted as an additional bedroom.

The segregated master suite offers privacy, while all bedrooms offer built-in robes. Bathrooms are luxurious, with slick modern fittings.

The home boasts reverse-cycle airconditioning with additional gas heating.

The perfect family home, 1 Bayley Street sits nestled in the tree-lined streets of Narrabundah close to shops and schools.

1 BAYLEY STREET, NARRABUNDAH

Price guide: $1.3 million

EER: 2.5

Agent: Richard Davies, Belle Property Kingston, 0414 517 658

Inspect: December 2, 1pm-1.30pm

Auction: December 9, 4.30pm

3 bed, 2 bath, 3 car

Highest recorded sale in Narrabundah during the past 12 months: $1,720,000, 68 Finniss Crescent, February 16, 2017

Recent sales:

$1.1 million, 12 McKinlay St, April 10, 2017

$1,075,000, 8/25 Jerrabomberra Avenue, March 17, 2017

$1,030,000, 35 McKinlay St, April 19, 2017

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Jets banking on fanpower

NEWCASTLE Jets chief executive Lawrie McKinna says the club can’t do much more,on or off the field,to welcome fans on game day.
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PASSION: Newcastle Jets supporters have had more to celebrate in 2017-18 than has been the case for many seasons. Picture: Darren Pateman

After eight rounds, Newcastle are second on the ladder and have scored 20 goals –six more than their nearest rivals.

The Jets have attracted 40,986 fans to their four home games this season at an average of 10,246, and McKinna was hopeful Saturday’s clash with Melbourne City at McDonald Jones Stadium –which might be the last chance for Novocastrians to watch Socceroos champion Tim Cahill live in action –would be a drawcard.

As an added incentive, the Jets are offering discounted, reserved tickets in the eastern stand at a cost of two for $30.

“This is the third game where we’ve had special ticket deals, so we’re doing our best to entice people to come,” McKinna said.

“The boys are playing good football, and getting results on the park. So we think the boys deserve a big crowd to play in front of, and hopefully the public get behind us on Saturday night, up against Melbourne City and Tim Cahill, who’s been one of the Socceroos’ real heroes.

“We had more than 14,000 for our first home game of the season, so it would be great to get up somewhere near that on Saturday.”

McKinna said “you’re not going to go to another stadium in Australia and get a grandstand, reserved ticket for just 15 bucks”.

Newcastle’s home crowds are up on last season, when an average of 8645 turned out each game to support them in a season that culminated inthe wooden spoon.

In their 2007-08 premiership-winning season, their home crowds averaged 14,176, including a full house of22,960 for the opening round of the finals.

This season’s attendances include 6258 on a wet night against Wellington, and last week’s Thursday night game against Melbourne Victory (8427).

“We’ve been happy with our crowds so far, but new fans are always welcome,” McKinna said.

“We’ve been scoring goals, and it’s a good atmosphere. Newcastle has been waiting for so long to have a successful team, and this year we’re heading in the right direction.

“We want everyone to jump on the bus. If you haven’t been to a game for a while, come along, bring a friend, and enjoy the atmosphere.”

Adding to the occasion on Saturday night, there will be a special presentation to Newcastle’sErnie Merrickwhen he become’s the first A-League coach to reach the 250-game milestone.

A win by the Jets against third-placed City would lift Newcastle at least six points clear of their nearest rivals in the race for a top-two finish.

Selling your home in the summer Canberra market

Summer and Christmas collide at a time of year when home buyers are frantic to settle their biggest piece of festive season shopping.
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Justine Burke of Luton Properties Weston Creek & Molonglo Valley says the end-of-year deadline ups the pressure on buyers to secure a property.

“Most of them want to buy a home, get the contract settled and to move in before Christmas,” she says.

“They certainly want to ensure that school enrolments are also in place so they can relax into the new home for a few weeks.”

Burke says the pressure to secure a home in the lead-up to Christmas also affects prices.

“While buyers are super keen, a lot of owners decide to hold off putting their homes on the market,” Burke says.

“As supply tightens, we often receive really strong pre-auction offers as buyers try to outwit their competition.” Related articles: How to keep your indoor plants vibrant in Canberra’s climate

Related articles: Which Canberra neighbourhood is best for me?

Related articles: What are the chances of my Canberra home passing in?

Stephen Bunday of LJ Hooker Dickson says buoyant summer sales are a highlight of the Canberra property calendar.

“We are usually really busy in the first quarter of the year when Canberra experiences a boost in new arrivals,” he says.

“But supply can also be very tight and listings are often down.

“I remember one year when I had 60 groups waiting to inspect a very humble home in the Belconnen area,” Bunday says.

The LJ Hooker principal says that despite the supply levels, buyers are still looking for residences that push all the right buttons: price, kerb appeal, plenty of space for the family – and pools are enjoying a new level of popularity.

TIPS FOR BUYING & SELLING IN SUMMER

Timing. Spring is the best time to begin looking if you want to be in a home by Christmas. The new year also heralds the arrival of new entrants to the housing market.

Be prepared. A tightening of supply into the early part of the new year may mean being willing to make a strong pre-auction offer if you want to secure your dream home.

It’s in the detail. Sellers should present their properties in the best possible light. If you put off a spring clean in September, now’s the time – before the sign goes up.

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Baker progresses in Hawaii

ADVANCE: Merewether surfer Jackson Baker. Picture: Marina NeilMerewether’s Jackson Baker faces a second-round test against hometown Hawaiian and two Brazilians at the season-ending Vans World Cup of Surfing on Friday(AEST).
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Baker made the cut at the World Surf League 10,000-pointqualifying series(QS) event at Hawaii’s North Shore beach after a buzzer-beating ride in his opening heat.

The 20-year-old natural-footer saved his best until last and produced a ride of6.23, whichfolloweda 5.33 on the wave prior to narrowly edge out US competitor Tanner Gudauskas.

Baker (11.56) ended up 0.06 points ahead of Gadauskas (11.50) in the four-man battle taken out by Hawaii’s Logan Bediamol (12.36), which included a single-wave score of 9.43.

In three heats time on the island ofOahu, Bakertakes on Flavio Nakagima, Bino Lopes and Torrey Meisterin a bid to makeround three.

Baker hopes to improve his current QS ranking of 112th, which dropped back while inthe US state this month after finishing 49that the 3000-point HCI Pro and 81stat the 10,000-point Hawaiian Pro.

His 37that Portugal’s10,000-point Pro Cascais early last month earned him1000 QS points. It was his second-best collection of 2017. He has 4070 points overall, made up of his top-five results.

FLASHBACK: Surfest crowds in the 1980s

SUPERCARS: Poynting takes dip at Nobbys

PHOTOS: Amputee surf day in Newcastle

Meghan Markle’s romance ‘created rifts’ reveals her half-sister

Meghan Markle’s half-sister has revealed in an interview that her sister’s regal engagement “created some rifts” with her family, but that they are happy for her.
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“It created some rifts with us, but people across the pond think we’re mean people saying bad things about her, but that’s not the case,” she said in an interview with Us Weekly.

Markle’s half sister Samantha Markle (also known as Samantha Grant), revealed that the pair had not spoken since 2008, but that she is happy for her sister.

“It was really exciting for me. I am so happy for her.”

“[My father is] very excited, just like the statement he released. He is truly happy about their union, but what’s important if it’s Prince Harry or anyone else, you want to make sure someone you love gets married, that they know enough about the person they’re marrying and they’ve had a while to get to know each other,” she said.

“So my father and I are both so excited because they’ve had a long time to get to know each other and then know what they want to do. That’s really important for us,” the half-sister added.

The author and mother of three has also dismissed rumours that her new book, The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister, is about Markle.

“Everyone assumes my book is a slamming tell-all, which it is not. Now it can be egg in their faces and everyone can say what they think. My book is not a small piece and it is important historically. I wasn’t in a position to release what it was about. They assumed the worst and I think that’s unfair and our family members who spoke about my book shouldn’t be doing so.”

While Samantha says it is unlikely she will be invited to the wedding, she hopes to attend.

“I would love to go and show her how much I love her and how happy I am about this and for her,” she said.

On the woman’s Twitter, she has joked about crashing the royal wedding if she isn’t invited. This is how my brother Tom Markle Junior plans to crash through the gates of Buckingham palace at the [email protected][email protected]@radaronlinepic.twitter南京夜网/nXMqPVBBhd??? Samantha Markle (@SamanthaMGrant) November 29, 2017This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Did this beachside suburb inspire Big Little Lies?

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 30: View of Avalon Beach, on January 30, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Anna Kucera/Fairfax Media)It’s known for its fabulously bronzed surfer mums, stunning coastline, oceanfront real estate and tight-knit community feel.
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But did the suburb of Avalon Beach on Sydney’s far Northern Beaches really inspire Liane Moriarty’s gossip-fuelled book – and the subsequent Emmy-winning TV series – Big Little Lies?

The novel is set in a “fictional” Northern Beaches community but in the past year Australian media outlets have hinted that the made-up suburb’s resemblance to Avalon Beach – known colloquially as Avalon – may be more than a coincidence.

And with Moriarty confirming that she has been workshopping ideas for a Big Little Lies sequel, interest in the true setting of the original book seems unlikely to subside.

The novel depicts a loosely affiliated group of affluent mothers who juggle careers, their children’s demanding school environment, relationships with their spouses and – in one case – domestic violence.

Big Little Lies is full of inter-family drama, seaside yoga sessions and real estate with panoramic ocean views. In the end, the women band together to protect one of their own.

According to Stephanie Hammond, principal of Shores Real Estate in Avalon Beach, speculation about Moriarty’s inspiration has increased in the past year.

“One of the girls who works at my office read the book on a holiday in Bali about six months ago,” she says. Related: Z-shaped Avalon Beach house a marvel Related: Family suburb offers a sea changeRelated: Watch Avalon Now Season 2

“When she came back to work she told me how good the book was, and how she really recognised Avalon in it. She’s a mum with kids at the local school and told me she could have been a character straight out of the book.”

The novel pokes fun at the local primary school, suggesting that the children’s birthday parties and school fundraising events are really competitions between the parents. And it suggests that there is considerable pressure in the suburb to appear radiantly healthy.

Hammond says Avalon can feel that way, too. “People here are really aware of their health and fitness, so they look really good,” she says. “Sometimes that can be a bit intimidating.”

Avalon Beach is dominated by successful professionals with young families, as well as worldly retirees, which creates a competitive feel, even in the eyes of visitors.

But Hammond says the suburb is fundamentally a warm and welcoming place. “It’s a gentle and forgiving community. When times are tough, people really come together.”

She adds: “There’s an easiness about Avalon, an old-fashioned vibe that’s very appealing. In a world that feels quite threatening, especially to parents of young children, it feels sunny and safe.”

Its location north of the “Bilgola Bends” – a windy stretch on the Northern Beaches’ main road – gives it a tucked-away feel. And the commute to the CBD, which takes an hour even in good traffic, encourages many people to work from home and stay close to the suburb.

“Security’s not really a concern up here,” says Hammond. “No one locks their houses.

“Everyone knows the local GP, the local chemist, the local lawyers.”

Lucy Creegan, a full-time mother, moved from Britain to Avalon Beach with her husband, an infrastructure consultant, and their four young children nine years ago.

“We heard about Avalon through a friend and we just knew that, even though it would be a horrible bus commute into the city for my husband, we had found paradise,” she says.

Creegan says the Avalon community welcomed her family whole-heartedly. “By the end of the first week I was with new friends down at the RSL, our kids playing in the playground.”

Creegan has also heard rumours about Big Little Lies being based on Avalon, but takes issue with the book’s darker content, particularly the feuds between the women.

“The book is certainly not my perception of where I live,” she says. “Avalon’s a friendly place. In my nine years here, I can only think of one example of nasty gossip on Facebook.”

Jan Roberts, a retired historian and author who has written two books about Avalon Beach, says the suburb attracts residents for the long term. (Her children and grandchildren are locals, too.) But she fears a crowded future.

“The trouble is, Avalon is getting far too much publicity. We’ve got one of the largest primary schools in the state. It’s bulging at the seams,” she says.

“The movement in and out of our precious suburb is becoming very compromised by traffic, poor transport and too many people.

“We are absolutely mushrooming – like most of Sydney.”

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Regulator bans pelvic meshes

Late: Pelvic mesh campaigner Gai Thompson says the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s decision to ban prolapse mesh devices is “too little, too late”.Suffer in Silence: Our campaignAUSTRALIA’Speak medical device regulator has banned all transvaginal pelvic mesh devices to treatprolapse in women but the move is “too little, too late”, say womenwho have complained for years about devastating complications following mesh surgery.
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“Why has it taken so long?” said Gai Thompson, of Sydney, after the Therapeutic Goods Administration announced it was removing the last mesh devices on the market to treat prolapse in women after childbirth, implanted via the vagina, because of little or no evidence backing their safe use.

The TGA said it was also cancelling single incision mini-slings to treat stress urinary incontinence after evidence the risks to women outweighed the benefits.

The move follows years of complaints by women leading to several high-profile class actions involving at least 1300 Australian women, an unknown number of confidentialsettlements with doctors, and an on-going Senate inquiry launched after Victorian Senator Derryn Hinch described pelvic mesh as “the greatest medical scandal” against Australian women.

Inits statement on Wednesday, after sustained public criticism of the regulator by women dealing with the consequences of mesh surgery, the TGA said the move came after it reviewed the latest published international studies of transvaginal mesh devices –implanted via the vagina rather than abdomen –of each device supplied in Australia.

“The TGA is of the belief that the benefits of using transvaginal mesh products in the treatment of pelvic organ prolapse do not outweigh the risks these products pose to patients,” the TGA said.

While the ban includes single incision mini-slings it does not extend to mid-urethral slings regarded as the “gold standard” for treating stress urinary incontinence. Despite evidence supporting the benefits of the mid-urethral slings, a significant number of women are registered in a legal class action against Johnson & Johnson alleging serious complications from the use of one of its most popular mid-urethral slings.

The TGA announcement comes just weeks after the regulator announced it was moving to shift all transvaginal mesh devices in Australia, to treat prolapse and stress urinary incontinence, to a high risk classification.

The TGA issued cancellation notices, and notices to impose conditions, on a number of manufacturers on Wednesday, with the ban coming into effect from January 4. The devices can be used until then, and manufacturers have 90 days to appeal.

The TGA said it had overseen the removal of 45 transvaginal mesh devices since it launched a review in 2013 following global controversy about the devices.

Mrs Thompson, who was implanted with a Johnson & Johnson Prolift device in 2008 leading to catastrophic injuries, complained to the TGA in 2011 but said her complaint was simply filed and not taken seriously.

“The TGAtreated us with complete disdain. A group of usmet with them in May last year and they were so dismissive, just like the doctors have been dismissive. For years we’ve been saying these devices have destroyed women’s lives, and no-one was listening,” Mrs Thompson said.

“The only reason this is happening now is because of the publicity. They have been so condescending. How many women have had their lives destroyed because these people didn’t act when they should? Why were these devices ever let on the market when clearly there was no evidence they could be safely used?”

Review: Inside Sydney’s newest five-star hotel

The place
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Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour The location

Overlooking Darling Harbour, towards the CBD, the hotel is conveniently located adjacent to the new International Convention Centre. It’s a short walk across the Pyrmont Bridge to the city, while the Harbourside Shopping Centre is on your doorstep. The space

The Sofitel became the first new-build five-star hotel to arrive in Sydney since before the city hosted the Olympics and its owners, Accor, have certainly made the most of the opportunity to create a property from scratch. The 35-floor, 590-room tower is now Darling Harbour’s tallest building.

The facilities make the most of the location, with the hotel’s champagne bar and restaurant offering views across the harbour to the city, as does the impressive infinity pool on the fourth floor – a spot likely to become a favourite for photo shoots and Instagrams.

The Club Mill??sime on the top floor offers even better views, looking all the way up Darling Harbour and beyond. Canapes and drinks are served nightly for for guests staying in Club Sofitel rooms. The room

I’m in a junior suite – a large corner space with a dining/meeting table, a desk, a large couch and two armchairs. A wall unit is adorned with glass sculptures. And a huge flat screen TV. The bedroom is separate, with its own TV, a king-size bed and generous storage space.

Of course, for a five-star hotel there’s the obligatory pillow menu, though I’m quite happy with the default options.

The bathroom is fabulous – a deep, freestanding tub with the toilet and double shower each with their own enclosed spaces. There’s also a TV set into the wall. Hermes toiletries

The only issues are a couple of minor annoyances – the remote control for the bedroom TV is missing and, while there is tea and coffee making facilities, there is no milk or whitener to be found. Both require calls to guest services, who deliver the required items in reasonable time. The food

The hotel restaurant Atelier, is a large space (unsurprising given the number of rooms the hotel houses) offering a mix of share plates and individual mains. It’s a mix of modern French and Australian. I opt for the salt cod brandade as an appetiser, which is tasty and light, and follow it with a main of crispy skin smoked duck breast. The latter is a rich, generous portion that I don’t manage to finish despite how delicious it is. The rib eyes ordered by my companions are equally large and challenging to finish. Service, while friendly, is a little slow.

Breakfast is also served in the restaurant and is a diverse and high quality buffet. Stepping out

Rather than just look out at the harbour, why not get out on it? There are a number of harbour cruise operators that depart from Darling Harbour and take in the highlights of waterside Sydney, including the Harbour Bridge, Opera House and as far out as the Sydney Heads where the harbour meets the ocean. The city’s official tourism site, 梧桐夜网sydney南京夜网, has details of numerous operators and cruise types. The verdict

With new hotels opening and expanding, Sydney is finally catching up to demand. The Sofitel Darling Harbour is an excellent addition to the city’s accommodation landscape and will no doubt prove a hit with tourists and business travellers alike. Essentials

Rooms at the Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour start from $499 per night, with junior suites from $879 per night.

See sofitelsydneydarlingharbour南京夜网419论坛Highlight

The views from the rooms, pool or bar will impress any visitor to Sydney. Lowlight

Service looks to still have a few teething problems.

Craig Platt stayed as a guest of the Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour.

See also: Australia’s largest – inside Sydney’s giant new hotel

See also: 52 Weekends Away – the best weekend escapes in NSW and the ACT