Woodside Petroleum announces share sales

SYDNEY: Australian energy giant Woodside Petroleum on Monday said it would raise 2.5 billion dollars (2.3 billion US) by selling new shares to pay for a push into the growing liquefied natural gas (LNG) sector.

Woodside said top shareholder Shell would take up its entitlement in full, an investment of about 862 million dollars as the company pursues new projects in Western Australia.

"The funding will strengthen Woodside's balance sheet and increase liquidity in preparation for further liquefied natural gas development," the company said in a statement.

Woodside, Australia's top publicly listed oil and gas company, has stakes in Western Australia's North West Shelf joint venture and the proposed Browse, Sunrise and Pluto LNG terminals.

The company is offering one new share at 42.10 dollars for every 12 already owned, a 10 percent discount on Friday's 47.18 close.