Prov­i­dence seek­ing funds

Irish Examiner - - Front Page - Geoff Per­ci­val

Oil and gas ex­plo­ration firm Prov­i­dence Re­sources is “con­sid­er­ing its fund­ing op­tions” as it only has suf­fi­cient work­ing cap­i­tal to cover its costs through to the end of next month.

Last year, the com­pany tapped share­hold­ers for €3.4m to fund it­self into the early part of this year.

Prov­i­dence Re­sources is once again look­ing for fresh money, say­ing it is “con­sid­er­ing its fund­ing op­tions” as it only has suf­fi­cient work­ing cap­i­tal to cover its costs through to the end of next month.

The oil and gas ex­plo­ration com­pany tapped share­hold­ers for €3.4m last year to fund it­self into the early part of this year.

That move — which it re­ferred to as “the un­think­able” — fol­lowed a fail­ure by Chi­nese con­sor­tium Apec En­ergy to pro­duce €8m in promised project fund­ing for the flag­ship Bar­ry­roe field off the Cork coast. Apec was Prov­i­dence’s de­vel­op­ment part­ner at Bar­ry­roe.

Prov­i­dence has since em­barked on a se­vere cost cut­ting round and re­placed long-stand­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive Tony O’Reilly Jr with in­dus­try vet­eran Alan Linn.

Prov­i­dence has now for­mally be­gun the le­gal process of as­sign­ing Apec’s 50% stake in Bar­ry­roe back to the orig­i­nal own­ers, mean­ing

Prov­i­dence will re­gain an 80% share­hold­ing, with Lans­downe Oil and Gas own­ing 20%.

A fresh farm-out deal — aimed at bring­ing in a new de­vel­op­ment and fund­ing part­ner for Bar­ry­roe — is now be­ing sought. Prov­i­dence said that “a num­ber of com­pa­nies” are as­sess­ing field data at Bar­ry­roe.

Prov­i­dence has brought at­ten­tion to Bar­ry­roe’s “con­sid­er­able” gas re­source and said “sev­eral ad­di­tional com­pa­nies” that had not ini­tially been sniff­ing around the field have ex­pressed in­ter­est in its gas po­ten­tial.

Prov­i­dence said its shortto-medium term fo­cus re­mains on Bar­ry­roe, which will need at least two ap­praisal wells drilled to re­move lin­ger­ing un­cer­tain­ties.

“In other words, is Bar­ry­roe a large oil field with a gas cap, or a large gas field with an oil rim?” said Davy an­a­lyst Job Lang­broek.

“These un­cer­tain el­e­ments have al­ways been un­der­stood, but the gas po­ten­tial is now also be­ing em­pha­sised fol­low­ing in­ter­est from sev­eral in­dus­try groups ex­am­in­ing the data. In the con­text of the new cli­mate ac­tion en­vi­ron­ment, this in­ter­est is wel­come,” Mr Lang­broek said.

Prov­i­dence is also look­ing to find a farm out part­ner for its Dun­quin South prospect, lo­cated off the south-west coast, af­ter Ital­ian ex­plorer Eni said it was pulling out.

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