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Stone Energy Corporation Announces Third Quarter 2011 Results

LAFAYETTE, La., Nov. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --

Stone Energy Corporation (NYSE: SGY) today announced financial and operational results for the third quarter of 2011. Some of the highlights include:

  • Net daily production for the third quarter of 2011 averaged 34.2 MBoe (205 MMcfe) per day. Volumes were impacted by greater-than-expected downtime due to Gulf of Mexico (GOM) shut-ins from Tropical Storm Lee, Appalachian shut-ins from Hurricane Irene, and unplanned third party pipeline downtime in the GOM. Average daily production for the fourth quarter of 2011 is expected to be 35-38 MBoe per day (210-230 MMcfe per day).
  • The Deep Gas discovery at LaPosada/La Cantera (34.5% w.i.) was tested and is expected to produce at 20-30 MMcf (gross) per day plus associated condensate and NGLs. Production is projected to commence by the second quarter of 2012.
  • Also in Deep Gas, drilling continues at the ultra-deep Lighthouse Bayou Prospect (25% w.i.) with a current depth of approximately 24,000 feet. Results are expected in the fourth quarter.
  • In the Conventional Shelf, Stone drilled two successful oil development wells, Frost Up and Buzzjet (both 100% w.i.). Frost Up is the seventh consecutive successful well at the Amberjack field, and Buzzjet is the second consecutive successful well at Ship Shoal 113 field. Both wells are currently being completed, with production expected in November.
  • In the Deep Water, the Pyrenees development project is progressing, with production expected for the first quarter of 2012 (30% w.i.).
  • In Appalachia, the third-party midstream pipeline is projected to be operational in the Mary field during the fourth quarter. Eleven wells are expected to be tied-in and on production before year end. A total of 25 horizontal wells are expected to be drilled during 2011.
  • A positive pricing differential for Louisiana Sweet Crude to West Texas Intermediate provided incremental margins of over $20 per barrel during the third quarter, which is expected to continue into the fourth quarter and into 2012.
  • A definitive agreement was executed for the divestiture of Stone's non-operated working interest in the Main Pass 296/311 field for approximately $80 million.

President and Chief Executive Officer David H. Welch stated, "Our strategy is progressing in each of our business units as we have a number of significant projects nearing completion, while others are commencing. We are nearing the objective at our ultra-deep Lighthouse Bayou prospect. Production from our Mary field in West Virginia is scheduled to come on line in November, which should boost Appalachian volumes to 30-40 Mmcfe per day, including liquids. Our first deep water discovery at Pyrenees is due to commence production for the first quarter at a rate of over 60 Mmcfe per day (gross). Production from the LaPosada/La Cantera Deep Gas discovery is expected by the second quarter of 2012. Finally, three wells in our Deep Water portfolio are substantially permitted and poised for drilling in 2012. Production growth in the fourth quarter and in 2012, combined with attractive Gulf Coast oil prices and an undrawn credit facility recently reaffirmed at a $400 million borrowing base, should provide liquidity for the drilling of these attractive projects. Additionally, the proceeds from the pending divestiture of our non-operated working interest at Main Pass 296/311 will be targeted for growth opportunities."

Financial Results

For the third quarter of 2011, Stone reported net income of $51.8 million, or $1.06 per share, on oil and gas revenue of $207.7 million, compared to net income of $19.4 million, or $0.40 per share, on oil and gas revenue of $153.2 million in the third quarter of 2010. Discretionary cash flow totaled $161.2 million during the third quarter of 2011, as compared to $92.5 million during the third quarter of 2010. Please see "Non-GAAP Financial Measures" and the accompanying financial statements for a reconciliation of discretionary cash flow, a non-GAAP financial measure, to net cash flow provided by operating activities.

Net daily production during the third quarter of 2011 averaged 34.2 thousand barrels of oil equivalent (MBoe) per day (205 million cubic feet of gas equivalent (MMcfe) per day), compared with net daily production of 37.8 MBoe (227 MMcfe) per day in the second quarter of 2011, and net daily production of 33.0 MBoe (198 MMcfe) per day in the third quarter of 2010. The gas/oil split for the third quarter of 2011 was approximately 52%/48%.

Prices realized during the third quarter of 2011 averaged $103.51 per barrel of oil and $5.17 per Mcf of natural gas, as compared to the third quarter of 2010 average realized prices of $72.52 per barrel and $5.48 per Mcf. Effective hedging transactions increased the average realized price of natural gas by $0.47 per Mcf in the third quarter of 2011, compared to $0.96 per Mcf in the third quarter of 2010. Effective hedging transactions decreased the average realized price of oil by $2.16 per barrel in the third quarter of 2011, compared to $2.79 per barrel in the third quarter of 2010.

Lease operating expenses during the third quarter of 2011 totaled $47.8 million ($15.21 per Boe or $2.54 per Mcfe), compared to $36.9 million ($12.15 per Boe or $2.03 per Mcfe), in the third quarter of 2010.

Depreciation, depletion and amortization (DD&A) on oil and gas properties for the third quarter of 2011 totaled $63.8 million ($20.30 per Boe or $3.38 per Mcfe), compared to $59.0 million ($19.44 per Boe or $3.24 per Mcfe), in the third quarter of 2010.

Salaries, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses (excluding incentive compensation expense) for the third quarter of 2011 were $7.2 million ($2.28 per Boe or $0.38 per Mcfe) which included $2.6 million in one-time positive adjustments primarily due to an insurance reimbursement, compared to $9.8 million ($3.21 per Boe or $0.54 per Mcfe), in the third quarter of 2010.

The third quarter of 2011 current income tax benefit included $10.6 million of one-time adjustments attributable to prior tax periods, resulting in overpayments. The effective tax rate was not materially impacted as most of the adjustments shifted from current to deferred tax expense, and therefore had minimal impact on net income.

Capital expenditures before acquisitions and capitalized SG&A and interest during the third quarter of 2011 were approximately $162.2 million, which includes $19.0 million of plugging and abandonment expenditures. Additionally, $5.0 million of SG&A expenses and $11.5 million of interest were capitalized during the quarter.

As of September 30, 2011, we had no outstanding borrowings under our bank credit facility and letters of credit totaling $61.1 million had been issued pursuant to the facility. In late October 2011, the bank group reaffirmed the existing borrowing base at $400 million. The borrowing base will not be affected by the pending divestiture of Stone's working interest in Main Pass 296/311.

Pending Divestiture

On October 28, 2011 Stone entered into a definitive agreement to sell its non-operated working interest in the Main Pass 296/311 field to an unrelated third party for approximately $80 million and the assumption by the third party of the associated abandonment obligation. The divestiture will impact current production by approximately 900 boe per day and is expected to close during the fourth quarter. The purchase is subject to preferential rights-to-purchase held by the operator of the properties, and the closing of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and adjustments. The sale will be accounted for as an adjustment to the full cost pool with no gain or loss recognized.

Business Strategy and Operational Update

Our business strategy is to leverage cash flow generated from existing assets to maintain relatively stable GOM shelf production, profitably grow gas reserves and production in price-advantaged basins such as Appalachia and the Gulf Coast Basin, and profitably grow oil reserves and production in material impact areas such as the deep water GOM and onshore oil.

LaPosada/La Cantera Prospect (Deep Gas). A limited flow test was completed at the LaPosada well. The test results from a 10/64 inch restricted choke indicate the well is expected to produce at a gross daily rate of 20-30 MMcf of gas plus approximately 20 barrels of oil and 36 barrels of natural gas liquids per MMcf of gas. Stone expects to be on production by the second quarter of 2012 and now has an approximate 34.5% working interest in the project after the purchase of a 1.5% working interest from a small partner. The La Cantera #2 well is planned for the second quarter of 2012 and is expected to evaluate the unbooked northern portion of the structure offsetting the initial well. Separately, production from the Deep Gas discovery at South Erath (14% w.i.) is projected to come on line in November at a gross rate of 10-12 MMcfe per day.

Lighthouse Bayou Deep Prospect (Ultra Deep Gas). The Lighthouse Bayou prospect, located in Cameron Parish, is currently at a depth of approximately 24,000 feet and is permitted to drill up to 25,000 feet. Results are expected during the fourth quarter. Stone holds a 25% working interest in the prospect.

Garden Banks 293 - Pyrenees (Deep Water). The project is in its final stages of flow-line and umbilical installation with production expected for the first quarter of 2012 at a gross rate of over 60 MMcfe per day. Stone holds a 30% working interest in Pyrenees.

Mississippi Canyon Block 109/Ship Shoal 113 (Conventional Shelf). Frost Up, the seventh and final well of the platform rig program at Amberjack, is currently being completed with first production anticipated in November. Stone has a 100% working interest in the Amberjack field. The Buzzjet well at Ship Shoal 113 was also successful, with first production expected in November.

Plug & Abandonment Program (Conventional Shelf). Stone has entered into a contract for a Montco 335' lift boat to provide P&A services during 2012. This new vessel was built specifically for P&A operations and should provide cost-saving efficiencies on these P&A projects.

Appalachian Basin (Marcellus Shale Play). In West Virginia, the third-party Caiman pipeline is projected to be tied in during the fourth quarter with volumes from 11 wells in the Mary field. The late December exit rate from Appalachia is projected to be 30-40 MMcfe per day, including liquids. Current projections now call for 25 horizontal wells to be drilled in 2011, utilizing one horizontal rig and one top-hole rig (up from previous guidance of 21-24 wells). Up to 16 wells are expected to be fractured during 2011. Current net production from the Katie area in northeast Pennsylvania and Heather/Buddy area in West Virginia is approximately 15 MMcf per day.

Hatch Point Field - Cane Creek formation (Onshore Oil). Remedial work to dissolve drilling mud blockage was concluded on two of the three Stone wells, with resumption of oil production expected prior to year end. A decision on project development is expected in early 2012. Stone is the operator and has an approximate 75% working interest in the 46,000 acre project (35,000 net).

Eagle Ford shale - Moczygemba #1H (Onshore Oil). This horizontal well was recently put on pump and is flowing approximately 400 Boe per day, after producing at an initial rate of over 800 Boe per day. The drilling of a second well (Jarzembek #1H) began in mid-October and a third well is expected to also be drilled before year end. Stone holds a non-operated 42.5% working interest and approximately 1,600 net acres in this play.

2011 Guidance

Guidance for the fourth quarter and full year 2011 is shown in the table below. The guidance is subject to all the cautionary statements and limitations described below and under the caption "Forward Looking Statements."



Fourth Quarter


Full Year





Production - MBoe per day

(MMcfe per day)

35 - 38

(210 - 230)


35 - 37

(210 - 220)





Lease operating expenses (in millions)

-


$175 - $185





Salaries, General & Administrative expenses (in millions)

-


$42 - $45

(excluding incentive compensation)





Depreciation, Depletion & Amortization (per Mcfe)

-


$3.20 - $3.45





Corporate Tax Rate (%)

-


35% - 36%





Capital Expenditure Budget (in millions)

-


$500

(excluding acquisitions)

Hedge Position

The following table illustrates our derivative positions for 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 as of November 1, 2011:



Fixed-Price Swaps


NYMEX (except where noted)


Natural Gas


Oil


Daily

Volume

(MMBtus/d)



Swap

Price


Daily

Volume

(Bbls/d)



Swap

Price









2011

10,000*


$4.565


1,000


$70.05

2011

20,000


5.200


1,000


78.20

2011

10,000


6.830


1,000


80.20

2011





1,000


83.00

2011





1,000


83.05

2011





1,000**


85.20

2011





1,000


85.25

2011





1,000


89.00

2011





1,000***


97.75

2011





1,000***


104.30

2012

10,000


5.035


1,000


90.30

2012

10,000


5.040


1,000


90.41

2012

10,000


5.050


1,000


90.45

2012





1,000


95.50

2012





1,000


97.60

2012





1,000


100.00

2012





1,000


101.55

2012





1,000


104.25

2012





1,000****


111.02

2013

10,000


5.270


1,000


97.15

2013

10,000


5.320


1,000


101.53

2013





1,000


103.00

2013





1,000


104.50

2013





1,000****


107.30

2014





1,000****


103.30


* February - December

** January - June

*** July - December

**** Brent oil contract

Other Information

Stone Energy has planned a conference call for 10:00 a.m. Central Time on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 to discuss the operational and financial results for the third quarter of 2011. Anyone wishing to participate should visit our website at www.StoneEnergy.com for a live web cast or dial 1-877-228-3598 and request the "Stone Energy Call." If you are unable to participate in the original conference call, a replay will be available immediately following the completion of the call on Stone Energy's website. The replay will be available for one month.

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

In this press release, we refer to a non-GAAP financial measure we call "discretionary cash flow." Management believes discretionary cash flow is a financial indicator of our company's ability to internally fund capital expenditures and service debt. Management also believes this non-GAAP financial measure of cash flow is useful information to investors because it is widely used by professional research analysts in the valuation, comparison, rating and investment recommendations of companies in the oil and gas exploration and production industry. Discretionary cash flow should not be considered an alternative to net cash provided by operating activities or net income, as defined by GAAP. Please see the "Reconciliation of Non-GAAP Financial Measure" for a reconciliation of discretionary cash flow to cash flow provided by operating activities.

Forward Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking and are based upon Stone's current belief as to the outcome and timing of future events. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, that address activities that Stone plans, expects, believes, projects, estimates or anticipates will, should or may occur in the future, including future production of oil and gas, future capital expenditures and drilling of wells and future financial or operating results are forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements herein include the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices for oil and gas, operating risks, liquidity risks, political and regulatory developments and legislation, including developments and legislation relating to our operations in the Gulf of Mexico and Appalachia, and other risk factors and known trends and uncertainties as described in Stone's Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q as filed with the SEC. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties occur, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, Stone's actual results and plans could differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements.

Estimates for Stone's future production volumes are based on assumptions of capital expenditure levels and the assumption that market demand and prices for oil and gas will continue at levels that allow for economic production of these products. The production, transportation and marketing of oil and gas are subject to disruption due to transportation and processing availability, mechanical failure, human error, hurricanes and numerous other factors. Stone's estimates are based on certain other assumptions, such as well performance, which may vary significantly from those assumed. Delays experienced in well permitting could affect the timing of drilling and production. Lease operating expenses, which include major maintenance costs, vary in response to changes in prices of services and materials used in the operation of our properties and the amount of maintenance activity required. Estimates of DD&A rates can vary according to reserve additions, capital expenditures, future development costs, and other factors. Therefore, we can give no assurance that our future production volumes, lease operating expenses or DD&A rates will be as estimated.

Stone Energy is an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana with additional offices in New Orleans, Houston and Morgantown, West Virginia. Our business strategy is to leverage cash flow generated from existing assets to maintain relatively stable GOM shelf production, profitably grow gas reserves and production in price-advantaged basins such as Appalachia and the Gulf Coast Basin, and profitably grow oil reserves and production in material impact areas such as the deep water GOM and onshore oil. For additional information, contact Kenneth H. Beer, Chief Financial Officer, at 337-521-2210 phone, 337-521-9880 fax or via e-mail at CFO@StoneEnergy.com.

STONE ENERGY CORPORATION

SUMMARY STATISTICS

(In thousands, except per share/unit amounts)

(Unaudited)



Three Months Ended

September 30,


Nine Months Ended

September 30,


2011


2010


2011


2010

FINANCIAL RESULTS








Net income

$51,821


$19,382


$148,809


$72,672

Net income per share

$1.06


$0.40


$3.04


$1.50





PRODUCTION QUANTITIES




Oil (MBbls)

1,521


1,347


4,804


4,199

Gas (MMcf)

9,713


10,130


29,907


31,874

Oil and gas (MBoe)

3,140


3,035


9,789


9,511

Oil and gas (MMcfe)

18,839


18,212


58,731


57,068









AVERAGE DAILY PRODUCTION








Oil (MBbls)

17


15


18


15

Gas (MMcf)

106


110


110


117

Oil and gas (MBoe)

34


33


36


35

Oil and gas (MMcfe)

205


198


215


209









REVENUE DATA








Oil revenue

$157,436


$97,688


$484,788


$301,412

Gas revenue

50,244


55,522


152,615


179,571

Total oil and gas revenue

$207,680


$153,210


$637,403


$480,983









AVERAGE PRICES








Prior to the cash settlement of effective hedging transactions:








Oil (per Bbl)

$105.67


$75.31


$106.34


$76.04

Gas (per Mcf)

4.70


4.52


4.67


4.82

Oil and gas (per Boe)

65.73


48.51


66.45


49.71

Oil and gas (per Mcfe)

10.96


8.08


11.08


8.29

Including the cash settlement of effective hedging transactions:








Oil (per Bbl)

$103.51


$72.52


$100.91


$71.78

Gas (per Mcf)

5.17


5.48


5.10


5.63

Oil and gas (per Boe)

66.14


50.48


65.11


50.57

Oil and gas (per Mcfe)

11.02


8.41


10.85


8.43









COST DATA








Lease operating expenses

$47,767


$36,882


$133,307


$112,429

Salaries, general and administrative expenses

7,151


9,751


29,494


30,199

DD&A expense on oil and gas properties

63,757


59,001


201,934


180,434









AVERAGE COSTS (per Mcfe)








Lease operating expenses (per Boe)

$15.21


$12.15


$13.62


$11.82

Lease operating expenses (per Mcfe)

2.54


2.03


2.27


1.97

Salaries, general and administrative expenses (per Boe)

2.28


3.21


3.01


3.18

Salaries, general and administrative expenses (per Mcfe)

0.38


0.54


0.50


0.53

DD&A expense on oil and gas properties (per Boe)

20.30


19.44


20.63


18.97

DD&A expense on oil and gas properties (per Mcfe)

3.38


3.24


3.44


3.16









AVERAGE SHARES OUTSTANDING - Diluted

48,071


47,727


48,006


47,681











STONE ENERGY CORPORATION

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS

(In thousands)

(Unaudited)












Three Months Ended

September 30,


Nine Months Ended

September 30,



2011


2010


2011


2010










Operating revenue:









Oil production


$157,436


$97,688


$484,788


$301,412

Gas production


50,244


55,522


152,615


179,571

Other operational income


1,245


1,802


2,994


4,489

Derivative income, net


4,082


405


3,300


3,818

Total operating revenue


213,007


155,417


643,697


489,290










Operating expenses:









Lease operating expenses


47,767


36,882


133,307


112,429

Other operational expense


654


3,003


1,452


5,450

Production taxes


2,492


1,517


6,828


4,761

Depreciation, depletion and amortization


64,462


60,482


204,777


184,900

Accretion expense


7,700


8,460


23,134


25,384

Salaries, general and administrative expenses


7,151


9,751


29,494


30,199

Incentive compensation expense


2,087


767


7,104


2,113

Total operating expenses


132,313


120,862


406,096


365,236










Income from operations


80,694


34,555


237,601


124,054










Other (income) expenses:









Interest expense


1,379


2,667


6,470


9,273

Interest income


(23)


(51)


(170)


(1,110)

Other income


(372)


-


(1,499)


(776)

Early debt retirement expense


-


-


607


1,820

Other expense


308


57


501


546

Total other expenses


1,292


2,673


5,909


9,753










Income before taxes


79,402


31,882


231,692


114,301










Provision (benefit) for income taxes:









Current


(12,681)


10,182


(15,043)


4,918

Deferred


40,262


2,318


97,926


36,711

Total income taxes


27,581


12,500


82,883


41,629










Net income


$51,821


$19,382


$148,809


$72,672












STONE ENERGY CORPORATION

RECONCILIATION OF NON-GAAP FINANCIAL MEASURE

(In thousands)

(Unaudited)












Three Months Ended

September 30,


Nine Months Ended

September 30,



2011


2010


2011


2010










Net income as reported


$51,821


$19,382


$148,809


$72,672










Reconciling items:









Depreciation, depletion and amortization


64,462


60,482


204,777


184,900

Deferred income tax provision


40,262


2,318


97,926


36,711

Accretion expense


7,700


8,460


23,134


25,384

Stock compensation expense


1,354


1,282


4,492


4,023

Early extinguishment of debt


-


-


607


1,820

Other


(4,444)


578


(5,777)


(1,015)

Discretionary cash flow


161,155


92,502


473,968


324,495










Changes in income taxes payable


(15,465)


2,799


(21,710)


(6,014)

Settlement of asset retirement obligations


(18,975)


(8,854)


(52,543)


(28,652)

Other working capital changes


15,166


12,685


(11,302)


19,637










Net cash provided by operating activities


$141,881


$99,132


$388,413


$309,466












STONE ENERGY CORPORATION

CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET

(In thousands)

(Unaudited)



September 30,


December 31,



2011


2010

Assets










Current assets:





Cash and cash equivalents


$65,454


$106,956

Restricted cash


-


5,500

Accounts receivable


113,547


88,529

Fair value of hedging contracts


56,767


12,955

Current income tax receivable


22,149


-

Deferred tax asset


4,713


27,274

Inventory


4,802


6,465

Other current assets


933


768

Total current assets


268,365


248,447






Oil and gas properties, full cost method of accounting:





Proved


6,101,241


5,789,578

Less: accumulated depreciation, depletion and amortization


(5,009,076)


(4,804,949)

Net proved oil and gas properties


1,092,165


984,629

Unevaluated


511,574


413,180

Other property and equipment, net


11,191


10,722

Fair value of hedging contracts


50,171


-

Other assets, net


23,795


22,112

Total assets


$1,957,261


$1,679,090







Liabilities and Stockholders' Equity










Current liabilities:





Accounts payable to vendors


$90,659


$103,208

Undistributed oil and gas proceeds


16,924


10,037

Accrued interest


9,358


14,062

Fair value of hedging contracts


951


32,144

Asset retirement obligations


55,068


42,300

Current income tax payable


-


239

Other current liabilities


17,496


16,075

Total current liabilities


190,456


218,065






6 3/4% Senior Subordinated Notes due 2014


200,000


200,000

8 5/8% Senior Notes due 2017


375,000


375,000

Deferred taxes


219,393


99,227

Asset retirement obligations


289,604


331,620

Fair value of hedging contracts


-


3,606

Other long-term liabilities


19,034


21,215

Total liabilities


1,293,487


1,248,733






Common stock


481


478

Treasury stock


(860)


(860)

Additional paid-in capital


1,336,460


1,331,500

Accumulated deficit


(737,748)


(886,557)

Accumulated other comprehensive income (loss)


65,441


(14,204)

Total stockholders' equity


663,774


430,357

Total liabilities and stockholders' equity


$1,957,261


$1,679,090


SOURCE Stone Energy Corporation

625 East Kaliste Saloom Rd. Lafayette, La 70508
Phone: (337) 237-0410 Fax: (337) 521-2072
Copyright © 2014 Stone Energy Corporation