South Korean trader POSCO International Corp made an A$814.8 million (US$605.56 million) takeover bid for Senex Energy Ltd in September, the Australian natural gas producer said on Monday.

Senex said it was giving POSCO exclusive due diligence access until Nov 5 to better its already twice-improved bid of A$4.40 per share, with the South Korean firm indicating it would likely push the deal through an off-market takeover if it goes ahead.

POSCO International, the trading arm of South Korean steel giant POSCO , could not be immediately reached for comment.

Senex said POSCO International initially made its approach on Jul 30 with an A$4-per-share bid, followed up around a month later by an A$4.20-a-share bid.

After the latest bid on Sep 2, Senex granted POSCO exclusive access to its books, it said.

The latest bid is a 15.2 per cent premium to Senex’s close on Friday and a near 38 per cent premium to its close on Sep 1.

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