GKP Shares Rise following Update

By John Lee.

Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) closed the day up more than 5 percent on Wednesday, after the Kurdistan-focused oil producer provided an operational and corporate update to the markets.

Jón Ferrier, Gulf Keystone's Chief Executive Officer, said:

"I am pleased to report that throughout 2020, Gulf Keystone successfully managed the challenging operating environment delivering record annual average production of over 36,600 bopd and in December, record monthly average production of over 43,000 bopd.

"Planned debottlenecking works have increased PF-1 production capacity to more than 30,000 bopd and the Company expects to deliver average gross production in 2021 of 40,000 to 44,000 bopd. We look forward to updating guidance once conditions allow resumption of the 55,000 bopd expansion.

"I would like to thank the team at GKP for their dedication and professionalism in what has been a challenging year for the E&P sector. I look forward to working closely with my successor, Jon Harris, to effect a smooth handover of responsibilities and I am confident of the continuing success of the Company."

Operational

  • GKP's continued strong focus on safety resulted in no Lost Time Incidents during 2020.
  • The Company has effectively managed to minimise the impact of COVID-19 on our staff and contractors and ongoing production operations.
  • In 2020, average gross production at Shaikan was 36,625 bopd, exceeding the top end of the guidance range and the highest annual average production rate to date from the field.
  • The previously announced PF-1 plant debottlenecking work has delivered production capacity in excess of 30,000 bopd.
  • As a result, Shaikan Field production has increased and is currently c.44,000 bopd.

Financial

  • Total cash received from the Kurdistan Regional Government ("KRG") during 2020 for payments of crude oil sales was $129 million ($101 million net).
  • As a result of increased production and the recent improvement in the oil price, the December 2020 crude oil sales invoice submitted to the KRG was $18.0 million ($14.1 million net), up 65% from the previous month.
  • As at 12 January 2021, the Company had a cash balance of $147 million.

Corporate

  • Jon Harris to join as Chief Executive Officer and Board member on 18 January 2021.

Outlook

  • Guidance for 2021 is: 40,000 to 44,000 bopd average gross production, $15 to $20 million net Capex and $2.5 to $2.9/bbl Opex.
  • Guidance will be updated once conditions allow well workovers and/or the restart of the drilling programme to achieve 55,000 bopd.
  • Following receipt of the previously announced proposal to repay the arrears from the outstanding November 2019 to February 2020 invoices, totalling $73.3 million (net), the Company continues to engage with the KRG and will provide an update in due course.
  • The Company remains committed to maintaining its strong financial position and, as conditions continue to improve, will look to return to a balance of growth focussed field development investments and shareholder distributions.

(Sources: GKP, Yahoo!)

The post GKP Shares Rise following Update first appeared on Iraq Business News.

GKP appoints New CEO

By John Lee.

Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) has announced the appointment of Jon Harris as Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Mr Harris has over 30 years' experience in the oil and gas industry and joins GKP from SASOL Limited, an integrated energy and chemicals company based in South Africa where he was Executive Vice President, Upstream.

Prior to this, he spent 25 years with BG Group in various international roles, including Executive Vice President Technical and General Manager Production Operations, as well as senior management assignments in the United States, Trinidad and Tobago and Egypt.

Mr Harris received a Master of Engineering in Fuel and Energy (with distinction) from the University of Leeds, UK.

Mr Harris will join the Board of GKP and assume the CEO role on 18 January 2021.  He  will have a period of handover with Jón Ferrier who, as previously announced, will retire on 31 January 2021.

Jaap Huijskes, Chairman of the Company, said:

"Following a thorough global search process, I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Jon Harris as CEO.  Jon is an experienced executive who brings a wealth of highly relevant project delivery, asset management, production operations and technical experience within the sector to the management team and to the Board.  We look forward to him joining GKP and to his contributions. 

"On behalf of the Company, I would like to again thank Jón Ferrier for his outstanding commitment and contributions since joining Gulf Keystone in 2015. Under his leadership, GKP was successfully restructured and transformed, as evidenced by today's strong operational performance, low-cost structure, robust financial position and pathway to further production growth and value creation.  We wish him the very best of success for the future."

(Source: GKP)

The post GKP appoints New CEO first appeared on Iraq Business News.

GKP Shares Rally following Update

By John Lee.

Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum, have rallied more than 20 percent after the company issued an operational and corporate update on Tuesday:

Jón Ferrier, Gulf Keystone's Chief Executive Officer, said:

"We have made significant operational strides in recent months, ensuring we remain on-track to achieve our revised targets for the year. I am pleased to update stakeholders on further success in executing the previously reported, low-cost, high-impact investments that have so far increased gross production to 42,000 bopd, in excess of the initially targeted increase of 5,000 bopd.

"The Shaikan Field recently achieved an important milestone of cumulative production of 80 million stock tank barrels. This is a clear testament to not only the quality of the asset, from which there remains significant untapped potential, but also the professionalism and dedication of the team. We look forward to updating the market on further progress early in 2021."

Operational

  • Following on from the successful work over of the SH-12 well, the Company has progressed the previously announced low-cost, high-impact investments to further increase field production.
  • The SH-9 well, on which activity was suspended in March 2020 due to COVID-19, has now been successfully tied-in to PF-1 and is on production. PF-1 is now operating at its current maximum processing capacity of c.27,500 bopd. Debottlenecking activities at PF-1 remain on-track to further increase production capacity to over 30,000 bopd during Q1 2021.
  • Gross Shaikan production is currently at c.42,000 bopd, c.20% above the November 2020 average rate.
  • Average gross production for the year is expected to be at, or slightly above, 36,000 bopd, the top end of the guidance range.

Financial

  • The Company remains on track to achieve targeted G&A and Opex savings of at least 20% compared to 2019 and 30% on a run-rate basis.
  • Net capex for 2020 is expected to be at or slightly exceed the top end of the guidance range of $48 million, following the $3 million investment in high-impact projects.
  • The Kurdistan Regional Government ("KRG") has maintained regular payments for eight months, including the recent October receipt.
  • The Company has extended its hedging programme, establishing a H1 2021 floor price of $35/bbl on c.60% of production, based on current production levels.
  • As at 14 December 2020, the Company had a cash balance of $142 million.

Outlook

  • With completion of the debottlenecking of PF-1, GKP is expected to deliver a further increase in production in Q1 2021.
  • In line with the KRG's commitment to review the outstanding November 2019 to February 2020 invoices totalling $73.3m (net) when oil prices reached $50/bbl, we are pleased to confirm receipt of a proposal to repay the arrears. We look forward to further engaging with the KRG on this matter and will provide an update in due course.
  • GKP is well positioned to restart its drilling programme to achieve 55,000 bopd when circumstances permit.
  • The Company remains committed to maintaining its strong financial position and aims to return to a balance of production growth and shareholder distributions, as conditions continue to improve.
  • The search process to identify a successor for CEO, Jón Ferrier, is ongoing.

AGM Update

In accordance with the 2018 UK Corporate Governance Code, the Company can confirm that following the Annual General Meeting held on 19 June 2020, where three of the proposed Resolutions did not attain the support of 80% of the votes, members of the Board and executive management team have consulted with several of the Company's large shareholders. Mr Garrett Soden has been reappointed to the Board of GKP as a Non-Independent Non-Executive Director representing funds managed by Lansdowne Partners Austria, GKP's largest shareholder. The Company continues to actively engage with its shareholders.

(Source: GKP)

The post GKP Shares Rally following Update first appeared on Iraq Business News.

GKP Shares Rise as Workover Completed

By John Lee.

Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) were trading up 5 percent on Monday morning as the company announced that the planned workover on the SH-12 well has been completed safely.

Jón Ferrier (pictured), Gulf Keystone's Chief Executive Officer, said:

"We continue to successfully manage the challenging macro backdrop and make operational progress. I am pleased to report the successful planned workover of the SH-12 well, which is currently producing at over 5,000 bopd, driving an approximately 15% increase in production from the field.

"As announced in our half-year results, the SH-12 workover was one of a series of opportunities identified which in aggregate were expected to increase gross production by c.5,000 bopd. With the very successful SH-12 workover result and work to bring SH-9 online and the debottlenecking of PF-1 proceeding as planned, we now expect to exceed our original incremental production expectation.

"We are also pleased to confirm that we expect average production from the Shaikan Field this year to be at the top end of our guidance range for 2020. I look forward to updating all our stakeholders in December 2020 on the wider progress we have made as a business."

Initial production from SH-12 was from the Lower Jurassic Butmah reservoir providing valuable information for future development planning. The workover involved moving up hole, perforating and producing from the main SAM reservoir.

SH-12 returned to production on 15 November 2020 and the well is currently flowing at a stable rate of over 5,000 bopd. The additional production flows to the PF-2 production facility, where there is spare production capacity. The workover design allowed the original Electronic Submersible Pump ("ESP") completion to remain in place during the operation and the ESP is now back-in service. The operation came in ahead of schedule and on budget.

The Company is pleased to confirm that average 2020 gross production is expected to be at the upper end of the previously disclosed guidance range of 35,000 - 36,000 bopd, with the field currently producing at c.39,000 bopd.

The Company intends to publish an Operational & Corporate Update in December 2020.

(Sources: GKP, LSE)

The post GKP Shares Rise as Workover Completed first appeared on Iraq Business News.

GKP Reports Loss for 1H 2020

By John Lee.

Shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) were trading largely unchanged at lunchtime on Thursday, after the company announced a loss for the half year ended 30 June 2020.

Company statement:

Jón Ferrier, Gulf Keystone's Chief Executive Officer, said:

"We moved decisively to protect the business and preserve liquidity in response to COVID-19 and the decline in oil prices. We are actively managing the impact of COVID-19 and working to protect our staff. The Shaikan Field continues to perform well with production up more than 25% compared to H1 2019. 

"While waiting to resume the 55,000 bopd project, the Company has identified a number of simple, low-cost, high-impact investments that have the potential to increase the current base level of gross production by approximately 5,000 bopd and, subject to a satisfactory operating environment, could be implemented in the near-term.

"We continue to maintain a tight focus on cost control and further savings will be reflected in the full year results.

"With our current measures in place, we are pleased to provide 2020 gross production guidance of 35,000 to 36,000 bopd. With continued improvement in macro and operating conditions, we are well positioned to deliver the long-term potential of the Shaikan Field and look forward to resuming shareholder distributions over time."

Highlights to 30 June 2020 and post reporting period

Operational

  • Operations at Shaikan continue safely and reliably, with no Lost Time Incidents ("LTIs") reported during 2020.
  • The Shaikan reservoir continues to perform in line with expectations, with current gross production of c.36,000 bopd and average 2020 gross production to 1 September 2020 of 36,272 bopd.
  • At the time of suspension of investment plans in March 2020, key drilling and facilities activities were on track to achieve the 55,000 bopd target in Q3 2020.
  • GKP is preparing to return to production growth, and has identified a number of quick payback projects, which are expected to increase gross production by c.5,000 bopd for an aggregate gross cost of c.$3 million. Planning is ongoing and, subject to a satisfactory operating environment, could be implemented in the near-term.
  • The Company remains committed to operating sustainably. Throughout the pandemic, the Company has continued to actively support the communities around Shaikan and has donated essential equipment to nearby hospitals.

Financial

  • H1 2020 revenue of $49.9 million (H1 2019 - $95.6 million) and Adjusted EBITDA of $27.5 million (H1 2019 - $59.0 million) resulted from the decline in oil prices, partially offset by increased production. Such factors combined with increased depreciation, depletion and amortisation ("DD&A") due to production growth drove a loss after tax of $33.1 million (H1 2019 - $24.2 million profit).
  • Opex per barrel in H1 2020 was $2.6/bbl, below guidance of $2.7 - $3.1/bbl. Operating costs and general and administrative ("G&A") expenses savings of 12% contributed to expense reductions compared to H1 2019, and further savings are expected in H2 2020 with the significant reduction in activity and continuing focus on cost control.
  • Net capex in H1 2020 was $38.5 million. H2 2020 net capex is expected to be minimal, comprised principally of long-lead time deliveries that will expedite the eventual restart of growth activities. Full year net capex is expected to be within the original $40-48 million guidance range.
  • To protect cash flows, Gulf Keystone hedged c.70% of its H2 2020 net production at a floor price of $35/bbl while retaining full upside exposure.
  • In Q1 2020, the Company completed the second tranche of its share buyback programme bringing total 2019 and 2020 capital distributions to $99 million.
  • Since March 2020, the Kurdistan Regional Government ("KRG") has paid for the last five months of oil sales in the following month as per its commitment to international oil companies ("IOCs").
  • The Company has a strong balance sheet with $140 million of cash at 2 September 2020 and no debt repayment until mid-2023.

  Corporate

  • As previously announced, Jón Ferrier, CEO, has informed the Board of his intention to retire from the Company upon appointment of a successor and after a period of handover. The search process for a new CEO is underway.
  • The Company announced the re-appointment of Garrett Soden to the Board of GKP as a Non-Independent Non-Executive Director representing funds managed by Lansdowne Partners Austria GmbH.

Outlook

  • After successfully managing the impacts of COVID-19 over the last several months, the Company is pleased to provide 2020 gross production guidance of 35,000 bopd to 36,000 bopd.
  • GKP is well positioned to restart its drilling programme to achieve 55,000 bopd when circumstances permit.
  • In line with its stated growth strategy, GKP continues to progress growth opportunities at Shaikan and will also consider potential value accretive inorganic options on an opportunistic basis.
  • The Company remains in a constructive dialogue with the KRG and will continue to seek the timely settlement of the overdue November 2019 to February 2020 invoices totaling $73.3 million (net). The KRG has committed that with the continuing improvement in the price of dated Brent above $50/bbl outstanding arrears will be reviewed.
  • GKP remains committed to maintaining its strong financial position and, as conditions continue to improve, returning to a balance of production growth and shareholder distributions.

This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014.

More here and here.

(Sources: GKP, Yahoo!)

The post GKP Reports Loss for 1H 2020 first appeared on Iraq Business News.

GKP CFO to Chair Oryx

Oryx Petroleum has announces the appointment of Sami Zouari (pictured) as Board Chair and Independent Director with immediate effect.

Mr. Zouari  succeeds Jean Claude Gandur who recently resigned from the Corporation as part of transactions consummated between The Addax and Oryx Group PLC and Zeg Oil and Gas Limited.

Sami Zouari was most recently the Chief Financial Officer and an Executive Director of Gulf Keystone Petroleum Limited, an independent oil and gas company that operates the Shaikan Field in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. During his tenure, Mr. Zouari played a lead role in the operational and commercial transformation and the financial restructuring of Gulf Keystone into one of the premier independent exploration and production companies operating in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and the wider Middle East. Prior to appointment at Gulf Keystone, Mr. Zouari held various positions at Total E&P and BNP Paribas.

Commenting today, Independent Director of Oryx Petroleum, Peter Newman, stated:

"We are delighted to welcome Sami to the Board. His extensive experience in the oil and gas sector in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and the Middle East, his knowledge of financial markets, and his experience with corporate transformation processes will be enormously helpful to us as we confront financial challenges and seek to maximise value from the Hawler license."

Also commenting today, Chair of Oryx Petroleum, Sami Zouari, stated:

"The Hawler license is an asset I believe has significant potential. I look forward to working with the Board and Management of Oryx Petroleum to transform Oryx Petroleum into one of the leading independent exploration and production operators in the Kurdistan Region."

(Source: Oryx Petroleum)

Soden Re-joins GKP Board

Further to the recent announcement that Garrett Soden was to be re-appointed to the Board of Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) as a Non-Independent Non-Executive Director representing funds managed by Lansdowne Partners Austria GmbH, the Company is pleased to confirm that the formal appointment process has now been completed and as such welcomes Mr Soden back to the Board of Gulf Keystone.

Garrett Soden has extensive experience as a senior executive and board member of various public companies in the natural resources sector. He is currently President and CEO of Africa Energy Corp., a Canadian oil and gas exploration company focused on South Africa, and is also a Non-Executive Director of Etrion Corporation, Noble Group Holdings Limited and Panoro Energy ASA. Mr Soden has undertaken to conform to UK corporate governance standards in respect of external appointments.

Directorships held within the past five years:

Phoenix Global Resources plc

Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd

Petropavlovsk plc

PA Resources AB

RusForest AB

(Source: GKP)

Ferrier Steps Down as CEO of GKP

Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) has announced that Jón Ferrier (pictured), Chief Executive Officer, has informed the Board of his intention to retire from the Company upon appointment of a successor and after a period of handover.

The Company is now commencing a formal, externally facilitated, search process and will provide an update as and when appropriate.

Jaap Huijskes, Chairman of the Company, said:

"Jón Ferrier took the helm five years ago, immediately leading the Company through its financial restructuring and breathing new life into GKP as an attractive investment proposition.  He has brought us the experience he gained over a long and distinguished career, resulting in GKP meeting the highest standards across all aspects of its business. 

"Today, Gulf Keystone is a highly respected and successful E&P Company, for which Jón deserves considerable credit.  On behalf of the Board and everyone within the Company I would like to thank Jón for his leadership and resolute commitment over the past five years.  We will be sad to see him step down when a successor is found and wish him all the best for his retirement."   

(Source: GKP)

GKP to Cut Workforce by 40%

By John Lee.

Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) has provided an operational and corporate update in advance of Friday's Annual General Meeting:

Jón Ferrier, Gulf Keystone's Chief Executive Officer, said:

"In response to the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic and macroeconomic conditions, we took decisive actions to preserve liquidity and safeguard the long-term health of the business. We are now well placed to weather the current environment and are able to move quickly back to growth at the right time. 

"Our cost reduction initiatives have been thorough, and I am grateful to our staff and contractors for their commitment and support.  Whilst uncertainty around the timing of the end of the crisis persists, the partial oil price recovery gives us some grounds for optimism about the future and our return to delivering the significant untapped value in Shaikan."

Operational

  • Maintaining strong focus on safety with zero LTIs recorded in 2020.
  • In order to protect all personnel, the Company continues to actively manage its working practices in light of the COVID-19 pandemic observing all of the appropriate protection measures.
  • Despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, production operations continue at c.36,000 bopd (gross). Average gross production for the year to date is 37,232 bopd.
  • DQE's Rig 40 has been stacked on site at zero cost, which will aid the timely resumption of drilling activities, when appropriate.
  • During this period of reduced activity, the Company continues to optimise its plans for a quick and effective restart of the 55,000 bopd expansion project.

Financial

  • As a result of a continued rationalisation of the organisation, expenditures, and contract renegotiations, the Company remains on track to achieve its previously announced target of Opex and G&A savings in excess of 20% in 2020 compared to 2019. On a run-rate basis, we are targeting to achieve savings of c.30%.
    • The Company is introducing 2020 guidance for Opex of $2.7 to $3.1 per barrel (vs $3.9 per barrel in 2019).
    • The workforce is in the process of being reduced by c.40%, including over 60% of expatriates, due to the reduction in the work programme.
  • Capex for 2020 remains in the range $40 - $48 million (net), a 50% reduction compared to 2019, of which $30 million (net) had been spent by the end of April 2020.
  • Cash balance of $144 million as at 17 June 2020.
  • Payments by the Kurdistan Regional Government to GKP are in line with the peer group, with invoices from March 2020 onwards being settled the following month. There is an ongoing dialogue relating to the payment of invoices for November 2019 to February 2020, aggregating $73 million (net).

Corporate

  • Garrett Soden is to be welcomed back to the Board of GKP as a Non-Independent Non-Executive Director representing funds managed by Lansdowne Partners Austria.
  • Mr Soden will be formally appointed following completion of the appointment process and will bring valuable financial and industry experience.  Mr Soden was a Non-Executive Director between 2016 and 2019 and he has undertaken to conform to UK corporate governance standards in respect of external appointments.

Outlook

  • With the Company's ongoing prudent approach to managing its financial position and the decisive measures taken to reduce its cost structure to preserve liquidity, GKP remains financially resilient to manage through the current macro environment.
  • Despite a partial recovery in oil price, the Company closely monitors market dynamics and will continue to take the appropriate actions to preserve value in Shaikan.
  • GKP looks forward to resuming investment and shareholder distributions when conditions allow.

(Source: GKP)

GKP Directors Buy Shares

By John Lee.

Gulf Keystone Petroleum (GKP) has announced that it was informed on 30th April 2020 of the following transactions by persons discharging managerial responsibilities and persons closely associated with them.

Mr Ian Weatherdon (pictured), Chief Financial Officer, purchased 50,112 common shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum Limited on 30 April 2020 at a price of 79.8p per share. In total Mr Weatherdon owns 50,112 common shares in the Company representing 0.024% of the issued share capital.

Mr Gabriel Papineau-Legris, Chief Commercial Officer, purchased 20,000 common shares in Gulf Keystone Petroleum Limited on 30 April 2020 at an average price of 84.225p per share. In total Mr Papineau-Legris owns 30,000 common shares in the Company representing 0.014% of the issued share capital.

(Source: GKP)