Significantly, during the reporting period the company agreed a deal to acquire Rockhopper Exploration’s Egyptian asset portfolio which delivers United’s first production operation, yielding around 5,100 barrels oil equivalent gross, along with further development and exploration upside.
It constitutes a reverse takeover, accordingly United’s shares are presently suspended, and the deal is due to complete in the fourth quarter.
“We have been very active in terms of our existing assets and management of our portfolio and we have made a series of announcements covering ongoing operations, a transformational acquisition, a successful divestment and corporate development to strengthen our team,” said Brian Larkin, United chief executive.
He added: “United will return to the market a significantly bigger company, with producing assets to complement our already impressive portfolio.”
United also struck a US$5mln deal to sell out of the Crown discovery, delivering further monetisation, it participated in the drilling of the Colter South Discovery off England’s south coast and was provisionally awarded new acreage via the UK government’s 31st offshore licensing round.
It also entered into a farm-in deal which gives it the option to acquire a 20% stake in a project offshore Benin.
In terms of its financial results, pre-revenue United reported a US$731,431 loss for the six months and noted that it ended June with US$1.78mln of cash and equivalents.
Production key in United’s outlook
United is paying US$16mln to acquire the Egyptian assets from Rockhopper with the deal partially supported by a financing deal with BP, which will provide US$8mln, along with a share placing to investors and a potential US$5mln issue of equity to Rockhopper.
The primary asset in the package is Rockhopper’s 22% interest in the Abu Sennan concession, which at the time of deal (in July) accounted for 1,100 boepd net.
Drilling activity is ongoing at Abu Sennan to lift production volumes. Since the start of the calendar year output from the field has increased to 5,100 boped from 3,800 boepd, United highlighted.
Looking ahead, United expects to add further production as the Selva field, in Italy, comes online in 2020.
In the second half of 2019, meanwhile, the operational focus will also be on desktop work for the Egdon Resources led Waddock Cross project, onshore UK, along with Tullow Oil’s ongoing evaluation of the Walton Morant licence in Jamaica.