BOWLEVEN, which moved its headquarters from Edinburgh to London following a boardroom coup, has slashed the valuation of its main asset sending shares in the company tumbling.

The oil and gas firm has cut the book value of its stake in the Etinde project off Cameroon by $62 million, to $150m, amid uncertainty about the prospects for bringing finds on the acreage concerned into production.

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The partners in the licence have cut their estimate of the amount of oil and gas available for production from Etinde to 244 million barrels oil equivalent (boe) from 290 million boe.

Bowleven’s chief executive Ei Chahin said until the partners in the licence and the Government of Cameroon reach a Final Investment Decision to proceed with a development and gain the necessary approvals, any valuation of Etinde would include many uncertainties and risks.

The licence for Etinde is due to expire in January 2021.

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Mr Chahin said the partners in the licence had move closer to monetising Etinde amid challenging conditions for oil and gas firms.

Bowleven paid a £49m special dividend in February worth 15p per share.

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Losses widened to $67m in the year to June 30, from $7m last time. Bowleven had $11m cash at the year end.

Mr Chahin earned $561,000 total remuneration in the latest year and $575,000 in the preceding period.

Former Bowleven chief executive Kevin Hart was voted off the firm’s board along with four other directors in March 2017 after a campaign for change led by the Crown Ocean Capital investment firm.

Bowleven shares closed down 22 per cent, 1.87p, at 6.8p.