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Ophir Energy aiming for ‘material milestones’ in 2017

Having started-up the Kerendan gas field in 2016, this year the company is advancing to ‘green light’ the Fortuna floating LNG project.

offshore oil platform
Ophir is advance field developments and restarting exploration.

Ophir Energy Plc (LON:OPHR) told investors it is aiming for ‘material milestones’ in 2017.

Having started-up the Kerendan gas field in 2016, this year the company is advancing to ‘green light’ the Fortuna floating LNG project.

The project’s final investment decision, which would open up some 345mln barrels oil equivalent for monetisation, could come by mid-2017, says chief executive Nick Cooper.

New exploration work is also slated with an exploration well in Côte d'Ivoire, targeting an estimated 234mln barrels of oil with a 23% chance of success. The well, Ayame-1X, is due to spud in May and drilling operations are expected to cost around US$30mln.

Ophir reported US$107mln of revenue for the year, generating US$62mln of cash. The company, meanwhile, reports a US$77.4mln loss for the year.

It ended the year with US$360mln of cash on the balance sheet, with net cash reported at US$160mln.

Reviewing the year, Cooper said: “2016 saw Ophir adopt the simple maxim "find low, monetise smartly. 

“Our decision to re-orient the Group's activities around net asset value per share has changed our corporate mindset.  All activities are now focused on finding or developing hydrocarbons at the lowest cost and monetising promptly and swiftly; thereby maximising the margin realised for shareholders.

“In 2016, Ophir delivered the start-up of the Kerendan gas field, we advanced the Fortuna FLNG project towards FID and significantly reduced our G&A cost (for a third year running).”

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