IPB focuses on oil and gas assets, rather than Buffett connection

Heard the rumour about Warren Buffett being linked to a new float on the ASX? If you have, your sources of information are a tad exaggerated but correct.

Heard the rumour about Warren Buffett being linked to a new float on the ASX? If you have, your sources of information are a tad exaggerated but correct.

The company is IPB Petroleum, a new oil and gas play, which began its initial public offering period on Tuesday. The Buffett connection is distant but comes from IPB's farm-in partner, CalEnergy Resources, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company, which is 89 per cent owned by Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway holding company.

IPB managing director Brendan Brown politely grimaces when the Buffett question is raised and seeks to return the conversation to the assets: two offshore oil and gas permits about 80 kilometres off Western Australia's Kimberley coast.

"We have a discovery and that's what we are charged with delivering," he said.

The assets have links to big names and not just because they neighbour Shell's Prelude field and the Woodside-operated Browse project.

One of the offshore permit areas was explored by BHP a couple of decades back and while oil was found, it did not appear to be in sufficient quantities for the multinational.

IPB has revisited the area and applied newer technologies, including a 3D seismic survey, and is confident further drilling will find more oil than BHP thought.

"We have an existing oil discovery in our permit, which gives us a certain amount of confidence because where you have discovered some oil there should be some more," Mr Brown said.

"We have an independent experts report that puts IPB's share of prospective resources at over 500 million barrels of oil at the mean prospective resource level ... that's just in the one permit."

IPB is offering shares at 50ยข and the offer will remain open until April 5.

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