Tom Cross hails Parkmead’s Dutch output as ‘outstanding’

Parkmead Group boss Tom Cross said yesterday an increase in gas production from Dutch assets amid a severe industry downturn was “an outstanding achievement” by the Aberdeen firm.

Speaking as the independent oil and gas company announced broadly unchanged losses for the six months to December 31, 2016, compared with a year earlier, Mr Cross said it was a period of “significant progress”.

First half pre-tax losses came in at £4.51million, against losses of £4.6million in the same six months of 2014, on revenue down by 61% at £2.7million.

But Parkmead highlighted gross profits of £700,000 for the latest period, compared with losses of £4.1million previously.

It also pointed to a “strong” total asset base worth £84million , no debt and a cash balance of £26.7million at the end of last year.

The company doubled stakes in the Polecat and Marten oil fields, together estimated to hold more than 90million barrels, in the UK Central North Sea to 100%.

It also increased its stakes in the Perth and Dolphin oil fields in the Moray Firth to 60.05%.

Perth and Dolphin are at the core of Parkmead’s Greater Perth Area (GPA) oil hub development, which has expected recoverable reserves and contingent resources of about 104million barrels.

Polecat and Marten are deemed to be potentially “highly valuable” because, given their closeness to Perth, they could be jointly developed as part of the GPA project.

Mr Cross, both chief executive and the biggest shareholder at Parkmead, said increased gas production from the group’s low-cost Netherlands portfolio drove the company into the black at the gross profit level.

He added: “This is an outstanding achievement for Parkmead at a time when global oil prices have remained low.

“Parkmead’s gas production acts as a natural hedge in this low oil price environment.

“We are delighted to have been able to increase our stakes in core areas of the group’s portfolio during the period, particularly around the important Greater Perth Area oil hub in the UK North Sea, where Parkmead has strengthened its position.

“The group’s reserves and resources also increased significantly in 2016 (proven and probable up 19% to 27.9million barrels of oil equivalent) through two licence acquisitions.”

Brendan Long, analyst at fiancial services company WH Ireland, said: “On balance, the company delivered a solid set of operational results which we believe stands in stark contrast to many North Sea companies who have reported significant losses over calendar year 2016.

“The company’s capital discipline has translated through to a strong financial position, with ample financial flexibility to exploit new opportunities that might arise.”

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