Whilst I’m generally wary of investing in small oil and gas companies, occasionally one comes along that appears to be in the right place, at the right time, and with the right assets and management team.
Since WH Ireland listed this company on AIM a month or so ago it is biased. And since I own a few shares and the CEO Steve Brown is a good chap from God’s chosen lands of Ulster, I too am biased. But if you want to read the note and WH Ireland’s logic it is below.
I start with the refugees which leads nicely into the vicious and Orwellian attack by Channel 4 News on Steve Brown of Orcadian Energy (ORCA) where I am a loyal shareholder. What has happened here is a direct attack on free speech, an attack by the media itself. It is horrific. Then it is onto Versarien (VRS). Ian Westbrook may well be within £1950 of being able to make the loathsome pig Neill Ricketts sweat like an AIMCEO so with 22 hours to go, please keep donating HERE. Meanwhile, Neill is up to his old tricks of disseminating over-egged “news” via non RNS means as I expose HERE. Surely the Oxymorons must act?
It has come to my attention that Steve Brown, the CEO of Orcadian Energy (ORCA) is the latest victim of the MSM obsession with closing down debate about climate change. Steve has deleted his twitter account following a report by Channel 4 (https://www.channel4.com/news/revealed-north-sea-oil-company-chief-exec-claims-climate-emergency-is-fake) that his personal twitter account expressed views about climate change and global warming which did not accord with the worshiping of Greta. History informs and teaches us and explains why my blood boils at this latest manifestation of the “cancel culture”.
Today has seen a new entrant to the AIM oil & gas sector of the market – Orcadian Energy (ORCA). I am a self-declared Victor Meldrew – grumpy odd sod who sees the only rain later when the sun is shining, and any downside has to be highlighted. But I know a genuine “Buy One Get One Free” deal when I see it. Not those marketer driven “pump the price then make the offer” deals so many supermarkets like. I mean the genuine miss-priced bargain deals. In my view Orcadian is in this special category of miss-pricing and I am likely to be buying as you are reading this article.
Shares in self-styled “the premier technology solutions provider to leisure, entertainment, hospitality, attractions and cultural markets”, accesso Technology Group (ASCO) were already down from circa 3000p reached in 2018 and more than 1000p as recently as August to 445p – but are currently down further to around 350p on the back of “End of Formal Sale Process and Trading Update” and “Intended Changes to Board Composition” announcements…
In the next 11 days we will be in Court at least once (snake oil salesman Darren Winters Round 5) but perhaps more of African Potash makes Tom a happy man and sues him for libel. He says he really does want to "see the Potash bitchez in Court!" For those company executives who consider legal letters journalists as a way of dimming pesky sunlight, I'd like to quote a bit of an article ShareProphets linked to last week. It's regarding Theranos, the once sky-high medical diagnostics firm that has had quite the fall to Earth.
Technology provider to the leisure and entertainment markets, accesso (ACSO) has announced the sale of £18.81 million of shares “by certain shareholders of the company, including certain board directors”. Hmmm…
This is ShareProphets writer and head honcho of the Steam Oil Company, Steve Brown presenting at Gold & Bears. Steve is currently doing an EIS fund-raising for his company and my Mrs is in. To read more about Steam Oil and details of the fundraise go HERE. Meanwhile enjoy the video.
Here's the thing, cutting costs is all well and good, indeed getting rid of waste and unnecessary expenditure is essential to create a platform for growth, but without growth, there is no future for the oil and gas business in the UK. Without growth then next year's production will decline and more costs need to be cut and the year after that even more, until one day the only option left is to shut everything down.
It is ouzo O'Clock for the Sheriff of AIM. At the last minute Julian Hamilton Barns and Athabasca Resources have pulled out of their attempt to injunct me, to have articles withdrawn and to gag me. That means:
Brazil is cleaning up its act, the national oil company, Petrobras, and its contractors are being dragged through a car wash. The country, the company and the industry will be better for it but in the process famous and respected companies will become casualties; some have already suffered, but investors will want to know how to predict who will be next in the firing line. Skip to the last paragraph if that is all you want to know.
Back in February 2015, Bob Dudley, BP's CEO, said in a Bloomberg TV interview that the fundamental supply and demand picture reminded him of 1986, and he feared we could go into a period of lower oil prices perhaps staying in a range below $60/bbl for as long as three years. He added "It will be a long time before we see $100/bbl again."
Everyone knows J. Paul Getty's formula for success: rise early, work hard, strike oil; and pretty much everyone I know in the oil business rises early and works hard, some of them even strike oil. So it's hard to find many oil folk who don't believe in the quote, of course the tricky bit is the last part of the aphorism. Striking oil generally requires a decent dollop of good fortune as well as brilliant geoscience and that elusive material, money; however when we do strike oil these days we generally manage to keep it in the well, unlike these pioneers in times past who needed to have a decent turn of speed when they struck oil.
Last week I spotted a very interesting chart that Gregor MacDonald tweeted which showed world oil production over recent years excluding the USA. The chart was pretty flat and that got me wondering about the extent to which the world has come to depend upon Light Tight Oil in the USA and, for that matter, Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage projects in Canada.
I say that but that isn't exactly what I mean. You can happily mix debt and oil production, the cost of debt can be set off against corporation tax and as long as you don't have too much it can improve your equity returns a treat, it even makes sense to draw down debt as you develop an oilfield. When I say that debt and oil are a toxic brew what I mean is that debt doesn't mix with exploration and appraisal. It's not that they don't mix well, they shouldn't mix at all.
I wrote before about my calculations of the breakeven point for some recent and some upcoming North Sea projects, but time marches on and cost estimates and reserve estimates change so I thought it worth updating the picture.
How do you know what a North Sea development project will cost? Well, most of us have our rules of thumb, some a tad more sophisticated than others. They range from just knowing that North Sea capex per barrel has been running at nearly $30/bbl for the last few years to sophisticated computer models based on construction rates and equipment weights.
All the Horse Hill shares were suspended yesterday morning pending an announcement in relation to Horse Hill. It caused lots of speculation and some think there is a big reserve update coming, I don't agree (I was completely wrong - see update below) but it set me wondering what could be going on. It can't be a placing, as so many companies are suspended, and a co-ordinated placing would be tricky; maybe the plan is to list Horse Hill developments, it could be that. Or maybe their partner has done something that they need to tell the markets about.