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Neptune profits up 15% with Seagull construction phase on horizon

Neptune Energy enjoyed a near-15% increase in group profits in a first half of 2019 marked by the sanctioning of a 50 million barrel North Sea project.

Private-equity-backed Neptune delivered the UK continental shelf’s first final investment decision of 2019 in March, when it gave the go-ahead for Seagull.

The field will be developed as a tieback to BP’s Etap platform in the central North Sea.

Neptune said today that the offshore construction campaign would start in the second quarter of 2020, with first oil coming the following year, adding 15,000 barrels per day of net output.

Neptune also brought the A5 well online at the Cygnus facility in the southern North Sea in June.

The field pumped out 16,800 barrels per day in the second quarter. Opex was maintained at around $8 per barrel.

Neptune’s UK business initiated a programme of efficiency improvements and identified a range of onshore and offshore opportunities.

And the company said progress continued to be made on decommissioning the Minke and Juliet fields on the SNS.

An exploration well will be drilled on the Isabella prospect in October.

Group first-half, pre-tax profits lifted 14.5% to £315 million, on revenues of £1 billion, up 16% year-on-year.

The firm also has production in Europe, Norway, North Africa and the Asia Pacific region.

Pete Jones, Neptune Energy’s UK Managing Director, said: “Our focus remains on growing our business safely and responsibly, delivering a strong track record and investing in the right opportunities.

“Our teams have performed very strongly to increase production efficiency on Cygnus and maintain low opex.

“We continue to work closely with our partners and we’re seeing strong progress with the Seagull project which was sanctioned and approved by the OGA in the first half of the year.

“We look forward to participating in the 32nd Offshore Licensing Round for exploration acreage later this year and remain on track to spud a well at Isabella in October, one of the most exciting prospects in the Central North Sea.”

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