CALGARY, ALBERTA–(Marketwired – Jan. 26, 2015) – Rock Energy Inc. (TSX:RE) (“Rock“) is pleased to provide a 2014 operations update and revised 2015 guidance. Rock is a Calgary-based crude oil exploration, development and production company.
During the fourth quarter of 2014 the Company drilled a total of 27 (27.0 net) wells including 16 (16.0 net) Onward Viking Horizontal wells, 8 (8.0 net) Mantario wells, 1 (1.0 net) exploration well and 2 (2.0 net) dry and abandoned wells for an average success rate of 93%.
For the full year of 2014 the Company drilled a total of 75 (75.0 net) wells including 39 (39.0 net) Onward Viking Horizontal wells, 21 (21.0 net) Mantario wells, 7 (7.0 net) Mannville wells, 2 (2.0 net) exploration wells and 6 (6.0 net) dry and abandoned wells for an average success rate of 92%.
Production during the fourth quarter averaged approximately 5,350 boepd (97% oil), and for the full year production is expected to average approximately 5,000 boepd. Mantario production in the fourth quarter averaged over 3,500 boepd. Onward Viking production during the fourth quarter was over 900 boepd from 47 of the 53 wells drilled into the play. Currently the Company is producing over 5,350 boepd including over 1,200 bopd of light oil from the Viking at Onward.
During the fourth quarter, the Company also made significant progress in the completion of the battery and injection facilities at the Mantario EOR project, and shot a 33 section 3D seismic program over our lands in the Onward area.
On November 5, 2014 Rock provided initial guidance for 2015 which included a capital spending program of $90 million generating average production of 5,400 boepd, assuming WTI would average $81.25 US/bbl for the year. Given the current level of crude oil prices, Rock has reduced its capital spending in 2015 to $25 million.
Strategically, Rock’s 2015 business plan is directed at activities that confirm proof of concept, capture new opportunities and preserve our existing inventory. This disciplined approach is targeted to maintain a financially strong organization with a long term view to value creation. No further capital is planned to be spent on development drilling until commodity prices improve.
Rock is focused on spending the minimum amount of capital to complete the essential projects related to the Mantario EOR scheme so that reservoir pressure can be maintained and the polymer injection can begin. This will ensure the maximum recovery factor, lowest decline rate, and the receipt of the EOR royalty incentive. It is expected that the polymer injection will begin in March of 2015. Drilling of the Viking wells at Onward and the exploration wells have been deferred. At the present time Rock has no drilling rigs operating.
With this change in strategy, the Company is now planning to spend $17 – $18 million in the first half of the year, and up to $25 million for the whole year. This reduced capital spending plan will generate average production for the year of 4,600 – 5,000 boepd. Assuming WTI averages $55.00 US/bbl for the year ($50.00 WTI US$/bbl for Q1 and Q2, and $60.00 WTI US$/bbl for Q3 and Q4), the WTI – WCS differential averages $15.00 US/bbl, and the exchange rate averages 1.25 CDN/US$ the Company would generate cash flow of approximately $35 million ($0.86/share). At current forward strip pricing (WTI ~$50 US/bbl), the Company would generate cash flow of approximately $18 million ($0.45/share).
2015 is proving to be a challenging year for our industry as we manage a significant reduction in commodity prices. We will be conservative and prudent with our capital spending, and will remain flexible to react to changing oil prices. For the present time, the leadership team at Rock is focused on maximizing our operating netback, managing the balance sheet and building our inventory of opportunity.
Advisory Regarding Forward-Looking Information and Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities laws. The use of any of the words “will”, “expects”, “believe”, “plans”, “potential” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements or information. More particularly and without limitation, this press release contains forward looking statements and information concerning: capital spending plans for 2015; and forecast average production for 2015.
The forward-looking statements and information in this press release are based on certain key expectations and assumptions made by Rock, including prevailing commodity prices and exchange rates; applicable royalty rates and tax laws; future well production rates; reserve and resource volumes; the performance of existing wells; the success obtained in drilling new wells; the sufficiency of budgeted capital expenditures in carrying out planned activities; the availability and cost of labour and services; and the receipt, in a timely manner, of regulatory and other required approvals. Although Rock believes that the expectations and assumptions on which such forward-looking statements and information are based are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on the forward-looking statements and information because Rock can give no assurance that they will prove to be correct. There is no certainty that Rock will achieve commercially viable production from its undeveloped lands and prospects.
Since forward-looking statements and information address future events and conditions, by their very nature they involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially from those currently anticipated due to a number of factors and risks. These include, but are not limited to, the risks associated with the oil and natural gas industry in general, such as: operational risks in development, exploration and production; delays or changes in plans with respect to exploration or development projects or capital expenditures; the uncertainty of reserve estimates; the uncertainty of estimates and projections relating to reserves, production, costs and expenses; health, safety and environmental risks; commodity price and exchange rate fluctuations; marketing and transportation of petroleum and natural gas and loss of markets; environmental risks; competition; incorrect assessment of the value of acquisitions; failure to realize the anticipated benefits of acquisitions; ability to access sufficient capital from internal and external sources; stock market volatility; and changes in legislation, including but not limited to tax laws, royalty rates and environmental regulations.
Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. Additional information on these and other factors that could affect the operations or financial results of Rock are included in reports on file with applicable securities regulatory authorities and may be accessed through the SEDAR website (www.sedar.com). The forward-looking statements and information contained in this press release are made as of the date hereof and Rock undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward looking statements or information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless so required by applicable securities laws.
Rock has adopted the standard of 6 Mcf:1boe when converting natural gas to boes. Boes may be misleading, particularly if used in isolation. A boe conversion ratio of 6 Mcf per barrel is based on an energy equivalency conversion method primarily applicable at the burner tip and does not represent a value equivalency at the wellhead. Given that the value ratio based on the current price of crude oil as compared to natural gas is significantly different than the energy equivalency of the 6:1 conversion ratio, utilizing the 6:1 conversion ratio may be misleading as an indication of value.
Rock Energy Inc.
Allen J. Bey
President and Chief Executive Officer
Rock Energy Inc.
Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer