Genel Energy’s new Deputy Chairman Buys Shares

By John Lee.

Genel Energy's newly-appointed Senior Independent Non-Executive Director and Deputy Chairman has purchased shares in the company.

Former UK Minister for Defence Sir Michael Fallon bought 9,000 shares on Thursday at £1.0967 per share, for a total price of £9,870.30.

He was appointed to the board in early February.

(Source: Genel Energy)

Genel Energy “Resilient to an Oil Price of $30”

Genel Energy has announces its audited results for the year ended 31 December 2019.

Bill Higgs, Chief Executive of Genel, said:

"The industry is currently facing headwinds that challenge companies to demonstrate their resilience and flexibility. Genel has a business model and strategy designed to shelter us from such extreme circumstances, with low-cost oil production, robust finances, and flexibility in our expenditure allowing us to pay a material dividend while retaining sufficient liquidity to capitalise on opportunities and take advantage of future upside.

"Our strong balance sheet with limited capital commitments allows us to invest in the most value accretive areas and pay this dividend at the prevailing oil price, even in a scenario with a temporary delay in payments from the KRG. We are a business that can generate excess cash at a sustained oil price of $40/bbl.

"Given the resilience of the business, our strong performance in 2019, and our view of future prospects, we have retained our dividend of 10¢ per share, deferring an increase until external conditions improve.

"This is a yield of over 20% on our current share price, offering investors the compelling combination of a significant yield from a sustainable dividend and funded growth. Our portfolio positions us well for a future of fewer and better natural resources projects. It is low-cost and low-carbon - the right assets, in the right location, with the right footprint."

Results summary ($ million unless stated)

2019 2018
Production (bopd, working interest) 36,250 33,700
Revenue 377.2 355.1
EBITDAX1 321.8 304.1
  Depreciation and amortisation (158.5) (136.2)
  Exploration (expense) / credit (1.2) 1.5
  Impairment of oil and gas assets (29.8) (424.0)
Operating profit / (loss) 132.3 (254.6)
Underlying profit2 134.9 138.9
Cash flow from operating activities 272.9 299.2
Capital expenditure 158.1 95.5
Free cash flow3 99.0 172.7
Dividends declared 40.8 -
Cash4 390.7 334.3
Cash after dividend5 377.1 334.3
Total debt 300.0 300.0
Net cash6 92.8 37.0
Dividend (declared and proposed) per share (¢ per share) 15.0 -
Basic EPS (¢ per share) 37.8 (101.6)
Underlying EPS (¢ per share)2 49.0 49.8
  1. EBITDAX is operating profit / (loss) adjusted for the add back of depreciation and amortisation ($158.5 million), exploration expense ($1.2 million) and impairment of property, plant and equipment ($29.8 million).
  2. Underlying profit is reconciled on page 13
  3. Free cash flow is reconciled on page 14
  4. Cash reported at 31 December 2019 excludes $3.0 million of restricted cash
  5. Cash reported at 31 December 2019 less interim dividend paid ($13.6 million) on 8 January 2020
  6. Reported cash less IFRS debt

Highlights

  • Ongoing strategic delivery from a strong financial platform, as highly cash-generative oil production increased to 36,250 bopd, up 8% year-on-year
  • Free cash flow ('FCF') of $99 million in 2019, pre dividend payment
    • This increases to $153 million (2018: $173 million), or $0.55 per share, taking into account the receipt of $54 million in payments from the Kurdistan Regional Government, due in 2019 and subsequently received in January 2020
  • Maiden dividend declared and $41 million distributed to shareholders
  • Cash of $391 million at 31 December 2019 ($334 million at 31 December 2018)
  • Net cash of $93 million at 31 December 2019 (net cash of $37 million at 31 December 2018)
  • Production cost of $2.9/bbl in 2019
  • Continued focus on safety: zero lost time incidents and zero losses of primary containment in 2019

Outlook

  • Genel is resilient to an oil price of $30/bbl, as low-cost production, a flexible capital structure, and robust balance sheet allows the payment of a material dividend, and the retention of a material net cash position at year-end 2020
  • Genel has significant capital allocation flexibility with limited commitments, is committed to retaining a strong balance sheet, and will ensure expenditure matches the external environment
    • Capital expenditure can be reduced to as little as $60 million in 2020, with an expectation that it will be around $100 million at the prevailing oil price, covering maintenance expenditure across our producing licences and investment at Sarta
    • Genel will sanction activity relating to the expenditure covered in the original $160 million to $200 million guidance range, as and when the external environment improves
  • COVID-19 is impacting the ease of operating in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Our producing operations are currently continuing with a reduced staff, but further activity is under review
    • Given the current market conditions, coupled with the delay in payments from the KRG, drilling activity at the Tawke PSC has been scaled back
    • Due to the delayed expenditure, 2020 net production guidance of close to Q4 2019 levels of 35,410 bopd is expected to be impacted, with the reduced producing asset work programme increasing cash flow generation in 2020 at the prevailing oil price, although a lower exit rate production will impact 2021
    • The Qara Dagh-2 well, which was set to spud in Q2 2020, is now likely to be delayed
  • Payments for production in October and November 2019, due in January and February 2020, have not been received. The KRG continues to state the importance of ongoing payments to oil companies, and we expect the government to deliver on this promise
  • Operating cash costs per barrel expected to be $3/bbl, amongst the lowest in the industry, fitting into a world of fewer and better natural resources projects
  • Genel is yet to receive draft legal documents reflecting the commercial understanding reached on Bina Bawi in September 2019, despite promises from the KRG
  • Emissions at Tawke and Taq Taq will reduce to 7kg CO2/bbl following completion of the enhanced oil recovery project at Tawke PSC in H1 2020
  • Given the resilience of the business and our strong performance in 2019, the Board is accordingly recommending a final dividend of 10¢ per share (2019: 10¢ per share), a distribution of c.$27.8 million, with a view to increasing the 2020 interim distribution should market conditions improve
  • Genel will seek to take advantage of opportunities to repurchase bonds at a value-accretive price

More here.

(Source: Genel Energy)

Genel Energy Update on Oil Reserves

Genel Energy plc has updated its oil reserves and resources across its portfolio.

Bill Higgs (pictured), Chief Executive of Genel, said:

"Genel's producing assets are profitable even at an oil price of $30/bbl and this, coupled with our robust balance sheet, supports investment in growth and the payment of a material dividend. The reduction of reserves at Tawke largely relates to production towards the end of the life of the field, and consequently our mid-term production outlook is materially unchanged and there is no reserves impact on our business plan.

"Our production funds an approved but flexible capital programme that, in the right market conditions, enables us to drill the wells necessary to evaluate the potential to convert the 2C oil resources in our portfolio, validated for the first time by ERCE, into reserves and production, boosting our cash generation potential."

Net oil reserves (MMbbls) 1P 2P 3P
31 December 2018 99.3 154.9 219.3
Production (13.2) (13.2) (13.2)
Technical revisions (17.2) (17.8) (11.2)
31 December 2019 68.8 123.8 194.9

International petroleum consultants DeGolyer and MacNaughton assess that on a gross basis, at the Tawke licence in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq containing the Tawke and Peshkabir fields, year-end 2019 1P reserves stood at 228 MMbbls, compared to 348 MMbbls at year-end 2018, after adjusting for production of 45 MMbbls and a downward technical revision of 75 MMbbls. Tawke licence 2P reserves stood at 400 MMbbls (502 MMbbls in 2018) and 3P reserves at 641 MMbbls (697 MMbbls in 2018).

Broken down by field, Tawke field gross 1P reserves stood at 176 MMbbls (294 MMbbls in 2018), 2P reserves at 284 MMbbls (376 MMbbls in 2018) and 3P reserves at 421 MMbbls (477 MMbbls in 2018). Peshkabir field gross 1P reserves stood 51 MMbbls (54 MMbbls in 2018), 2P reserves at 116 MMbbls (126 MMbbls in 2018) and 3P reserves at 220 MMbbls (unchanged from 2018).

Genel continues to take a conservative view of the Enhanced Oil Recovery project at the Tawke PSC, and will look to book reserves in relation to the project, which has the potential to increase recovery over the life of field, once enhanced performance has been demonstrated at the field.DeGolyer and MacNaughton has included23MMbbls of 2P and 45 MMbbls of 3P gross reserves, working interest portions of which are not included in the table above.

At Taq Taq, there is a minor technical downward revision of 2.1 MMbbls of gross 2P reserves associated with the unsuccessful TT-33 well, and these now total 44 MMbbls, with gross 1P reserves increasing by 3.3 MMbbls to 20.1 MMbbls, illustrating the continued strong underlying performance of the asset. McDaniel & Associates carried out the independent assessment of the Taq Taq licence.

Genel's gross 2P reserves estimate relating to Phase 1A of the Sarta development remains 34.3 MMbbls.

CONVERTING RESOURCES TO RESERVES

Net oil resources (MMbbls) 1C 2C 3C
31 December 2018 36.8 73.7 121.3
Technical revisions 29.7 78.3 224.5
31 December 2019 66.5 152 345.8

Following completion of the acquisition in 2019, Genel estimated gross resources at Sarta to be c.500 MMbbls. This potential has now been validated through an external audit conducted by ERCE, who has estimated a mid-case total recoverable oil resource of 593 MMbbls, of which 264 MMbbls is classified as 2C resource. Production performance in 2020, and the results of the upcoming three well campaign in 2021, will set out a roadmap for the conversion of these resources into reserves.

The Bina Bawi oil development has been certified by ERCE as 17.1 MMbbls of 2C resources, 13.6 MMbbls of which are expected to be converted into 2P reserves should a commercial agreement be reached and FID be taken on the first phase of the oil project.

At Qara Dagh the QD-2 well will test the crestal portion of the prospect which, based on a rigorous re-mapping exercise, has a mean prospective resource estimated by Genel at c.400 MMbbls. Genel estimates that the downdip segment tested by the QD-1 well defines a 2C resource of 47 MMbbls.

(Source: Genel)

Genel Energy “open to M&A Opportunities”

By John Lee.

Genel Energy is reportedly considering whether to expand its operations in Kurdistan and elsewhere.

CFO Esa Ikaheimonen (pictured) is quoted as saying that the company has net cash of about $100 million, is open to merger and acquisition opportunities.

(Source: Reuters)

Fmr UK Defence Minister joins Genel Energy Board

Genel Energy has announced the appointment of David McManus as Chairman with immediate effect.

Sir Michael Fallon (pictured) has been appointed as senior independent Non-Executive Director, and Tolga Bilgin and Hassan Gozal have also been appointed to the Board as Non-Executive Directors.

David McManus has more than 40 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, having held various executive roles at Pioneer Natural Resources, BG Group, ARCO, Ultramar, and Shell. He is currently serving as a Non-Executive Director at Hess Corporation, a large, integrated US oil and gas company; FlexLNG, a Norwegian listed LNG shipping company; and Costain Group PLC, one of the UK’s leading smart infrastructure solutions companies. Previous directorships include Rockhopper Exploration plc and Northern Drilling Limited.

Sir Michael Fallon has 30 years of senior political and business experience, serving in four British Cabinets, and as Non-Executive Director on City and commercial boards. He was MP for Sevenoaks from 1997 to 2019, serving as Energy Minister responsible for the oil and gas sector from 2013 to 2014 and as Secretary of State for Defence from 2014 to 2017.

Sir Michael will act as Senior Independent Director, Deputy Chairman and Chairman of the International Relations Committee. George Rose is remaining at Genel as an independent Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee.

Tolga Bilgin has been CEO of Bilgin Energy Holding, and its subsidiaries, since 2014. Bilgin Energy Holding is a pioneer and a leading Turkish energy firm, that owns, operates and sells electricity from wind, natural gas, and hydroelectric projects, and is a major shareholder of Genel.

Hassan Gozal is Chairman of Daax Corporation, a Dubai based company with investments in a wide range of sectors, notably energy and oil, oil and gas trading, construction, and property development with significant Middle Eastern experience, including the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. Daax Corporation is a major shareholder of Genel.

As a temporary result of these appointments, the majority of the Board (excluding the Chairman) is not independent. It is the intention of the Board to appoint one further independent Director to return to an equal balance of independent versus non-independent Directors as soon as reasonably practicable.

George Rose, Non-Executive Director of Genel, said:

“I am delighted to welcome David to the Board. He has vast experience which will help guide the Company through the next phase in our development, as we build our operating capability and seek material growth. The appointments today bring significant industry and international expertise, with experience of operating, investing, and delivering major projects in the region.”

David McManus, Chairman of Genel, said:

“Genel has built a portfolio with a compelling mix of cash-generation and funded growth options. I look forward to working with the Board as the Company continues to deliver on its strategy, enters an exciting new chapter, and strives to take advantage of the significant opportunities ahead.”

(Source: Genel Energy)

“Successful Year” for Genel Energy

By John Lee.

Shares in Genel Energy closed Thursday up more than 4 percent after the company issued the following trading and operations update in advance of the Company’s full-year 2019 results, which are scheduled for release on 17 March 2020. The information contained herein has not been audited and may be subject to further review.

Bill Higgs (pictured), Chief Executive of Genel, said:

2019 was a successful year for Genel, and we continue to deliver on our promises. We increased our highly cash-generative production in line with guidance, paid a material dividend, grew our operating capabilities, and added new assets to the portfolio that will bear fruit in 2020.

“Our ongoing cash generation, with confidence of regular payments and in the security of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, means that it is business as usual and our investment plans are moving forward at pace. This increasing investment in our growth assets is more than covered by expected free cash flow, and will see production diversify and increase as Sarta comes onstream in the summer, with enough remaining to underpin an increase in our already significant dividend.

FINANCIAL PERFORMANCE

  • $317 million of cash proceeds were received in 2019 (2018: $335 million)
  • Capital expenditure of $161 million (2018: $95 million), in line with initial guidance, as spending increased on growth assets
  • Free cash flow (‘FCF’) of $99 million in 2019, pre dividend payment
    • Cash proceeds and FCF were impacted by the non-receipt of $54 million in payments from the Kurdistan Regional Government (‘KRG’) relating to export sales in August and September 2019, due in November and December
    • Pro-forma FCF in 2019 was $153 million (2018: $164 million), or $0.55 per share
  • $26 million of outstanding payments from the KRG, constituting the full amount in respect to export sales in August 2019, has subsequently been received in 2020
  • Dividends of $42 million declared in 2019
    • Maiden dividend of $27 million (10¢ per share) paid in June 2019
    • A further $15 million distributed (5¢ per share) in January 2020
  • Cash of $387 million at 31 December 2019 ($334 million at 31 December 2018)
  • Net cash of $90 million at 31 December 2019 (net cash of $37 million at 30 December 2018)

OPERATING PERFORMANCE

  • 2019 net production averaged 36,250 bopd (2018: 33,690 bopd), in line with guidance and an increase of 8% on the prior year
  • Q4 averaged 35,410 bopd, an increase from 34,720 bopd in Q3
  • 19 new wells were brought onto production in 2019 across all assets
  • Production by asset was as follows:
(bopd) Gross production

2019

Net production

2019

Net production

2018

Tawke PSC 123,940 30,990 28,260
Taq Taq 11,960 5,260 5,430
Total 135,900 36,250 33,690

PRODUCTION ASSETS

  • Tawke PSC (25% working interest)
    • Tawke PSC gross production averaged 123,940 bopd, of which Peshkabir contributed 55,190 bopd
    • Production in Q4 2019 averaged 122,800 bopd, of which Peshkabir contributed 58,910 bopd
    • There will be an active drilling campaign in 2020 on the Tawke field, aiming to minimise decline rates
    • At Peshkabir, the P-12 well is currently appraising the eastern flank of the field, and is set to complete shortly
  • Taq Taq PSC (44% working interest and joint operator)
    • Taq Taq gross field production averaged 11,960 bopd in 2019
    • Production in Q4 2019 averaged 10,703 bopd
    • Following the successful drilling of the TT-34 well, which has now entered production at over 2,000 bopd with 20/64″ choke, production at Taq Taq has averaged c.12,800 bopd in the year to date
    • The latest well on the northern flank of the field, TT-35, spud on 6 January. This completes the drilling programme with the Sakson-605 rig
    • Further activity at Taq Taq is focused on maximising cash generation, with the optimised cost structure and 2020 work programme, which could see up to six wells drilled, under review

PRE-PRODUCTION ASSETS

  • Sarta (30% working interest)
    • Civil construction work at the Sarta field is continuing on schedule, with flowlines laid and buried and foundations in place for oil storage tanks, andGenel expects production to start in the summerof 2020
    • Phase 1A represents a low-cost pilot development of the Mus-Adaiyah reservoirs, designed to recover 2P gross reserves estimated by Genel at 34 MMbbls
    • Unrisked gross mid case resources relating to the Mus-Adaiyah reservoir are estimated by Genel at c.150 MMbbls, with overall unrisked gross P50 resources currently estimated by the Company at c.500 MMbbl
  • Qara Dagh (40% working interest and operator)
    • Civil construction works are progressing in preparation for the upcoming drilling operations, and the well pad and camp are on schedule for completion by the end of January
    • Environmental permits were granted in December 2019
    • The well will test the structural crest 10 km to the north-west of the QD-1 well, which tested sweet, light oil from Cretaceous carbonates
    • The QD-2 well is on track to spud in Q2 2020
    • Unrisked gross mean resources at Qara Dagh are currently estimated by Genel at c.200 MMbbls
  • Bina Bawi (100% working interest and operator)
    • Negotiations between Genel and the Kurdistan Regional Government (‘KRG’) regarding commercial terms for the gas and oil development at Bina Bawi made significant progress in the third quarter of 2019, resulting in an understanding on commercial terms for a staged and integrated oil and gas development being reached
    • Genel is now waiting to receive draft legal agreements reflecting this understanding
    • Genel is continuing the necessary readiness work required to enable rapid progress towards gas and oil developments upon receipt of signed documents
  • Somaliland – SL10B13 block (100% working interest and operator)
    • A farm-out process relating to this highly prospective block began in Q4 2019, with Stellar Energy Advisors appointed to run the process. A number of companies are now assessing the opportunity
    • Genel plans to conclude the farm-out process in H1 2020, aiming to minimise the cost to the Company of a well that could be spud in 2021
  • Morocco – Sidi Moussa block (75% working interest and operator)
    • The farm-out campaign is set to begin in Q2 2020, aimed at bringing a partner onto the licence prior to considering further commitments

ESG

  • Safety remains a priority for the Company, and our focus on this has led to zero lost time incidents (‘LTI’) and zero losses of primary containment in 2019 at Genel operations
    • There has not been an LTI since 2015, with over 11 million hours worked since the last incident
  • The operator of the Tawke PSC expects routine flaring to be eliminated on the licence in March 2020, with gas from the Peshkabir field set to be reinjected into the Tawke field in order to improve long-term reserves recovery
  • The search for a permanent Chairman is well progressed

OUTLOOK AND 2020 GUIDANCE

  • Net production in 2020 is expected to be close to Q4 2019 levels of 35,410 bopd, with an exit rate c.10% higher than this due to the expected addition of production from Sarta
    • Genel expects to drill over 20 producing wells in 2020
  • 2020 capital expenditure is expected to be $160-200 million, of which $120-150 million will be cost recoverable spend on assets on production in 2020. Other spend includes:
    • c.$35-40 million on the Qara Dagh 2 well
    • Under $10 million maintenance expenditure at Bina Bawi and Miran. Capital expenditure expectations for Bina Bawi in 2020 will be updated once legal agreements with the KRG have been signed
    • Under $2 million on African exploration assets
  • Operating costs per barrel expected to be $3/bbl, amongst the lowest in the industry
  • Opex: c.$40 million
  • G&A: c.$15 million
  • The Company expects full recovery of outstanding payments in Q1, and for regular payments to resume, as they had since September 2015
  • The Company continues to actively pursue growth and is analysing numerous opportunities to make value-accretive additions to the portfolio, but will only proceed with opportunities that fit our strict strategic criteria
  • Genel expects to generate c.$100 million in free cash flow, pre-dividend payments, in 2020
    • Given the ongoing strength of cash generation, confidence in the regularity of payments from the KRG, and the positive outlook for the Company, Genel reaffirms its commitment to growing the dividend

(Source: Genel Energy)

New Well at Taq Taq is Close to Production

Genel Energy has announce an update on activity at the Taq Taq field (Genel 44% working interest), as testing of the TT-34 well is nearing completion.

The well has produced from all zones tested, at a maximum combined flow rate of over 3,900 bopd with 28/64″ choke. With the inclusion of test production, gross production from the Taq Taq field is currently c.13,650 bopd.

Individual zone testing is now underway, which will determine the long-term production strategy. Genel expects the well to be placed on production around the middle of January with an initial flow rate of 1,500-2,000 bopd.

The rig has moved to drill the TT-35 well, also on the northern flank of the field, which is now preparing to spud.

(Source: Genel)

KRG Delays Payments to Oil Firms

By John Lee.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has delayed payments to oil producers by several weeks.

In statements to the markets on on Thursday, Genel Energy, Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) and Shamaran Petroleum said that payments relating to invoices for oil production in August and September, which were due to be paid in November and December, will be received in January 2020.

(Sources: Genel Energy, Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP), Shamaran Petroleum)

KRG Delays Payments to Oil Firms

By John Lee.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has delayed payments to oil producers by several weeks.

In statements to the markets on on Thursday, Genel Energy, Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) and Shamaran Petroleum said that payments relating to invoices for oil production in August and September, which were due to be paid in November and December, will be received in January 2020.

(Sources: Genel Energy, Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP), Shamaran Petroleum)

Genel Energy Chairman Steps Down

Following the announcement of 16 May 2019, in which it was stated that Steve Whyte (pictured), Chairman of Genel Energy, would not be standing for re-election at the 2020 Annual General Meeting, the Company announces that Steve has now resigned with immediate effect.

George Rose, Senior Independent Non-Executive Director, will act as interim Chairman until the ongoing search for a permanent Chairman is completed.

George Rose, interim Chairman of Genel, said:

When Steve joined Genel the Company had net debt of almost $150 million and unpaid oil receivables of over $400 million. He was a driving force behind the Receivable Settlement Agreement, which has transformed Genel’s financial position. We now have a stronger portfolio with exciting growth options and the right team to deliver them.

“Our highly cash generative oil production more than funds this growth, with sufficient cash left over to pay a material and progressive dividend. I would like to thank Steve for his efforts at Genel and look forward to seeing his future successes.”

(Source: Genel Energy)