It was another active week for London’s small-cap oil and gas sector.
() was a standout this week as the group made its second acquisition in lockdown and raised US$85mln of new funds.
The latest deal, for what the group described as ‘certain upstream and midstream assets from a US-listed oil and gas company’, sees the London-listed firm pay US$125mln along with the US$110mln agreed in the separate deal announced in early April.
On Tuesday, DGOC raised gross proceeds of US$85.8mln, selling 64.28mln new shares each priced at 108p, just a 1.6% discount to the average price a day before.
On Thursday, () () chief executive Paul Baay told investors that he remains confident about the group’s long-term strategy, especially its focus on gas which provides greater security amidst crude market volatility as the firm reported first-quarter results.
The AIM-quoted firm earlier this month inked a framework agreement for the sale of natural gas and gas liquids produced from the Ortoire block, onshore Trinidad. It followed breakthrough successes in the first two exploration wells drilled at Ortoire – Coho and Cascadura – and ahead of a third well, Chinook, which is planned for later in 2020.
Touchstone is presently projected to begin commercial production within Ortoire by October 2020.
Earlier in the week, micro-cap firm () jumped on Monday following news of a farm-out deal for exploration permit (EP) 155 in the Amadeus basin, in Australia’s Northern Territory.
Westmarket Oil & Gas, a subsidiary of , has inked a deal to earn a 70% stake by investing in work programmes at the project. Mosman will retain 30% and the transaction allows for the AIM-quoted firm to be ‘carried’ in an exploration well in return for a further 15% interest in the project.
() has agreed to pay a US$250,000 deposit, in cash and shares, for its previously announced acquisition of an additional 2.25% interest in the OML 113 asset in Nigeria.
“Keeping to our stated plan, we have completed the second stage of this agreement with EER, taking us another step closer to concluding the transaction and increasing our position in OML 113, which is a high-quality asset,” Osamede Okhomina, ADM chief executive said in a statement.
“Despite the wider, global macroeconomic issues, we believe the longer-term outlook remains very positive within our market. We are focused on continuing to execute our strategy and are well placed to do so having recently strengthened our financial position,” he added.
In other news, () successfully agreed amendments to its €5mln loan, with the lender accepting a deferral of all cash interest payments for 2020. In a statement, the company said the agreement with Lombard Odier Asset Management will help it preserve its existing cash resources.
A quarterly interest payment was due for the three months ended March 31, 2020, and that will no longer be required, with no cash interest payments now payable before March 31, 2021. Interest accruing in 2020 will be calculated on December 31, 2020, and will thereafter be added to the loan principle.
And () chairman David Bramhill told investors that excellent progress is being made bringing the Wressle oil field in North Lincolnshire to development.
It comes as the project’s operator confirmed the completion of four groundwater monitoring boreholes on the Wressle site, which are required under the project’s approvals, and a three-month period of monitoring and analysis will now take place.
On Monday, Union Jack confirmed it is fully funded for all its current drilling and well testing commitments in its full-year 2019 results statement.
The AIM-quoted company told investors it had a £5.5mln cash balance at the start of May 2019 and it remains debt-free. “My confidence in respect of Union Jack’s future remains highly positive,” executive chairman David Bramhill said in the statement.