September 21, 2009
PetroNeft Resources plc, the owner and operator of Licence 61, Tomsk Oblast, Russian Federation, is pleased to announce that it has agreed the terms of a conditional placing of 120,640,209 new Ordinary Shares at Stg?0.14 (€0.155) per Ordinary Share (the "Placing Shares"), raising gross proceeds of approximately US$27.5 million ("the Placing").
The net proceeds of the Placing will be applied to pipeline and related infrastructural expenditure, field facilities, drilling of production wells and general corporate overhead. The Company's field development programme is targeting commercial oil production commencing in Q3 2010. The first phase of the development programme will focus on the Lineynoye oil fields, with 9 new production wells planned for 2010 to complement the two existing wells, construction of a 70 km pipeline and associated field infrastructure development. The Company has already acquired over 90% of the pipe required and this has been in storage at a river port to the north of Licence 61. This pipe will now be available for the construction of the new export pipeline to the Imperial Energy facilities at the Kiev-Eganskoye field during the 2009/10 winter season.
Mobilisation of a production drilling rig and field facilities is expected to commence early in 2010 and development drilling is scheduled to commence in April 2010. Oil production is currently forecasted to commence during the third quarter and reach approximately 4,000 barrels of oil per day ("bopd") by the end of 2010. Peak production from the first phase of the development programme is forecast to reach 12,000 bopd in 2012. Additional phases will consist of existing and new fields discovered to the south, including the Kondrashevskoye and Tungolskoye oil fields, which will be developed incrementally in order to optimise the overall economics of Licence 61.
The Placing is being executed in two tranches and has been arranged by Joint Bookrunners Davy, Canaccord Adams and Renaissance Capital. The first tranche of the Placing consists of a conditional placing of 22,922,303 Ordinary Shares (the "'First Tranche Placing Shares") which is conditional, inter alia, on admission of such Ordinary Shares to trading on the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange ("AIM") and the IEX Market of the Irish Stock Exchange ("IEX"). The second tranche of the Placing consists of a conditional placing of 97,717,906 Ordinary Shares which is conditional, inter alia, on admission of such Ordinary Shares to trading on AIM and IEX and upon receiving shareholder approval to complete the Second Tranche Placing at an extraordinary general meeting of the Company to be held on 15 October 2009 ("EGM"). A circular to convene such an EGM will be sent to shareholders shortly.
Application will be made to the London Stock Exchange and the Irish Stock Exchange for the First Tranche Placing Shares to be admitted to trading on AIM and IEX, with Admission of the First Tranche Placing Shares expected to occur on 24 September 2009. Application will also be made for the Admission of the Second Tranche Placing Shares to trading on AIM and IEX, with admission of the Second Tranche Placing Shares expected on 16 October 2009, subject to the approval of the Second Tranche by the Company's shareholders at the EGM. The Placing Shares will, when issued, rank pari passu in all respects with the Existing Ordinary Shares including the right to receive dividends and other distributions declared following Admission.
Dennis Francis, Chief Executive Officer of PetroNeft Resources plc commented:
"We are delighted with the outcome of the Placing and the high level of support received from new and existing shareholders demonstrating the market's confidence in the Company and its strategy. The commencement of year-round production will represent a major milestone for PetroNeft and is an excellent base from which we can take advantage of the opportunities available to us in the region and further develop and expand our exciting portfolio of assets."
For further information, contact:
|Dennis Francis, CEO, PetroNeft Resources plc||+1 713 988 2500|
|Paul Dowling, CFO, PetroNeft Resources plc||+353 1 4433720|
|John Frain/Brian Garrahy, Davy (NOMAD, Joint Broker and Joint Bookrunner)||+353 1 679 6363|
|Jeffrey Auld/Elijah Colby, Canaccord Adams Limited (Joint Broker and Joint Bookrunner)||+44 207 418 8900|
|Dmitry Zubatyuk/Dmitry Brodsky, Renaissance Capital (Joint Bookrunner)||+7 497 258 7777|
|Nick Elwes/Simon Whitehead, College Hill||+44 207 457 2020|
This announcement contains forward-looking statements. These statements relate to the Company's future prospects, developments and business strategies. Forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as 'believe', 'could', 'envisage', 'potential', 'estimate', 'expect', 'may', 'will' or the negative of those, variations or comparable expressions, including references to assumptions.
The forward-looking statements in this announcement are based on current expectations and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by those statements. These forward-looking statements speak only as at the date of this announcement.
PetroNeft Resources plc was established in 2005 to develop oil and gas assets in Russia and the Former Soviet Union and was admitted to the London AIM and Dublin IEX Markets on 27th September 2006.
The main asset of the Company is a 100% interest in a 4,991 sq km oil and gas licence in the Tomsk Oblast in Russia, held through its wholly owned Russian subsidiary, Stimul-T. The Licence is located in the prolific Western Siberian Oil and Gas Basin and contains four known oil fields, Lineynoye, Tungolskoye, West Lineynoye and Kondrashevskoye, and over 25 exploration Prospects and Leads.
The Board and Management of PetroNeft is made up of highly experienced professionals, including former Marathon Oil Company executives, in the International and Russian Oil Exploration and Development business. The Russian Management team also has extensive local knowledge and experience in the exploration and development of oil and gas fields in the Tomsk Oblast.
Since acquiring Licence 61 in May 2005, the Company has carried out extensive reprocessing and reinterpretation, using modern technology, of over 2,500 line kms of vintage seismic acquired in Soviet times. It has also digitised and reinterpreted the logs of 14 wells drilled on the Licence since 1972. PetroNeft also has acquired over 1,000 line kms of new CDP-2D infill seismic and drilled six new exploration/delineation wells. This new seismic and six well drilling programme fully satisfied the exploration work obligation for the full 25 year licence term.
Reserve estimates on Licence 61 prepared by Ryder Scott as of 31 December 2008 were:
|Proved reserves||(1P)||10.2 million bbls|
|Proved and probable reserves||(2P)||70.0 million bbls (P1+P2)|
|Proved, probable and possible reserves||(3P)||529.4 million bbls (P1+P2+P3)|
PetroNeft has also recently announced a crude oil transportation agreement with Nord Imperial, effective for 25 years, which significantly reduces the various permits and associated approvals required for pipeline construction as well as the costs. The new route, from Lineynoye to Kiev-Eganskoye runs adjacent to the Tungolskoye and Kondrashevskoye oil fields and will create useful synergies for future development phases.
The Board of PetroNeft has approved the Phase 1 Development Plan for the Lineynoye and West Lineynoye Fields. PetroNeft expects to have year-round production from the Licence in the third quarter of 2010 with production of 4,000 bopd by the end of 2010. Production from the Phase 1 project is expected to peak at around 12,000 bopd in 2012.