FAROE Petroleum boss Graham Stewart’s comments yesterday about the company’s desire to remain independent shone a light on the possibility major shareholder DNO could mount a hostile takeover bid as early as next month.

In August DNO shelved an attempt to get two directors elected on to the Faroe board complaining about the Aberdeen company’s disdainful response.

DNO voiced concerns then about the wider governance culture and shareholder value strategies of a company in which it had made a big investment. It has given no indication what it might do next.

After stating on April 4 it did not intend to make an offer for Faroe DNO can not make a bid for the firm currently. But the six month restriction on it making a takeover move ends on October 4.

The saga will be followed closely in Scotland given the important role North Sea-focused Faroe plays in the country’s oil and gas sector and corporate world.

Faroe has grown from modest beginnings to command a stock market valuation of more than £500 million while remaining based in Aberdeen.

The company has focused recent drilling on Norway but showed faith in the exploration potential of the UK sector last month when it decided to drill off Shetland with partners.

Analysts at Arden Partners described Faroe as well run with a strong growth profile.

That might make it an attractive target for DNO, which has warmed to the North Sea of late. But a bidder might have to pay a very high price to have any hope of success.