Senex eyes gas growth year ahead

Senex managing director and CEO Ian Davies

Senex managing director and CEO Ian Davies

Senex Energy will focus on its gas operations in the coming financial year after weakening revenue and production figures and ongoing capex tightening measures were revealed in the company’s latest quarterly announcements.

A higher than expected oil price of $81 per barrel offset by a slight decrease in production led the firm to a six per cent quarter-on-quarter revenue rise, according to the Q2 statements published today.

Overall the company saw a 32 per cent decline in sales revenue for FY15 to $115.9 million reportedly off the back of the falling oil price. Net production for the 2014/15 financial year met the company’s revised estimates of 1.39 MMboe.

While highlighting progress at Senex’s gas operations in the Surat and Cooper basins, Managing director and CEO Ian Davies was tight-lipped about the company’s forward looking statements during today’s announcement.

He told investors the company’s internal cost saving measures and 25 per cent reduced capex expenditure would be carried over into the coming financial year to bolster funding for the company’s gas projects.

“During the year we made significant reductions to original capex program in response to the falling oil price,” he said.

“These reductions inevitably impacted production in FY15 and will have a follow on impact in FY16.”

Senex in January announced it is undergoing an internal cost saving program, which aims to reach a savings target of $6 million.

“It wouldn’t surprise you that everyone in the industry is having a good look at capex this year,” Mr Davies added.

The company aims to complete preparatory activities, commission three pilot locations and submit and EIS to the Queensland government for the Western Surat Gas Project in the coming year. The company will also focus on its unconventional gas operations with joint venture partner Origin Energy in the Cooper Basin with drilling expected in FY16.

“Key takeaways here are that we are pushing full steam ahead on our Western Surat Gas Project and also our unconventional gas joint-venture with Origin,” Mr Davies said.

“Priority number one is protecting our balance sheet and continuing our growth projects. The oil has been in the ground for several million years, three or six months either way won’t make a difference if it stays in the ground or not.”

“The project we’ve got in the Surat Basin has really come up the pecking order quite significantly … Our view is there is a very strong market and home for our gas and we are putting a lot of time and effort into focusing on making sure that we can lock the commercialisation of funding away for that project.”

The company’s annual reports and final work programs for the upcoming financial year are expected to be released in the coming weeks.

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