WoodMac sees huge growth potential in UK following Chrysaor-ConocoPhillips deal

Wood Mackenzie, an energy intelligence group, sees huge growth potential in the UK North Sea region following Chrysaor’s acquisition of ConocoPhillips’ UK business announced on Thursday. WoodMac added it would not be surprised to see Chrysaor make further moves to bolster its production outlook.

Jasmine asset; Source: ConocoPhillips

To remind, oil major ConocoPhillips on Thursday entered into an agreement to sell two ConocoPhillips United Kingdom subsidiaries to Chrysaor for $2.675 billion, plus interest and customary adjustments.

Full-year 2018 production and year-end 2018 proved reserves associated with the U.K. assets being sold were approximately 72 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day (MBOED) and approximately 99 million barrels of oil equivalent (BOE), respectively.

This acquisition increases Chrysaor’s pro forma 2018 production to 177,000 boepd, making Chrysaor one of the largest oil and gas producers in the UK North Sea.

Commenting after Chrysaor agreed to buy ConocoPhillips’ North Sea assets in a $2.7 billion deal, Romana Adamcikova, Wood Mackenzie senior analyst, North Sea upstream, said: “This deal will make Chrysaor the top producer in the UK in 2019 and keep it among the UK’s largest producers for the next few years.

“Considering the company was a relatively small producer before it acquired a batch of assets from Shell in 2017, this is a story of incredible growth.”

Namely, Shell sold its UK North Sea assets to Chrysaor in 2017 for a fee of up to $3.8 billion, including an initial consideration of $3bn and a payment of up to $600m between 2018- 2021 subject to commodity price, with potential further payments of up to $180m for future discoveries.

Adamcikova said that the Chrysaor-Conoco deal continues a theme seen across the North Sea in recent years with regionally focused, private companies acquiring assets from larger, international players.

Chrysaor has already shown it is willing to take older assets and invest to increase production with its efforts at the Greater Armada Area, which was due to be decommissioned before Chrysaor acquired it from Shell in 2017.

“It could take a similar approach here, particularly with it now becoming operator at the Britannia and J-Area hubs in the Central North Sea, which have potential for further growth,” she said.

“ConocoPhillips is shifting its focus towards lower cost opportunities elsewhere in the world, particularly in the US. Among such a wider global portfolio, UK fields would have struggled to compete for capital.

“Chrysaor also gains a stronger presence in the West of Shetland with a stake in Clair. It already had an interest in the Schiehallion field. There is huge growth potential in the region and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Chrysaor make further moves in the near future, to bolster its mid- to long- term production outlook.”

It is also worth mentioning that another major deal has been made recently which, once complete, will see Chevron become the second-largest producing major, in 2019 terms, according to WoodMac. This will be achieved through Chevron’s acquisition of Anadarko Petroleum in a deal valued at $33 billion, or $65 per share.

Offshore Energy Today Staff


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