Asset purchases in the United States, followed by oil and gas price increases, have paid off for Calgary-based Enerplus Corp., which switched to American production last year.
In deals described as a transformation, Enerplus bought into North Dakota and its Bakken Shale formation in the Williston Basin with a $465 million takeover of Bruin E&P Partners LLC and a $312 million asset purchase from Hess Corp.
Early this month Enerplus announced plans to sell its remaining Canadian properties, which account for about 7% of its production.
Annual average Enerplus oil output grew to 48,514 b/d in 2021 from 36,681 b/d in 2020. Natural gas liquids (NGL) output increased to 7,823 b/d from 4,499 b/d. Natural gas, from the eastern Marcellus Shale as well as the western Bakken, rose to 215 MMcf/d from 191 MMcf/d.
The annual average price fetched by Enerplus oil about doubled to $66.05/bbl in 2021 from $33.30/bbl in 2020. NGL prices jumped nearly four-fold to $29.86/bbl from $7.79/bbl. Natural gas about doubled to $2.98/Mcf from $1.40/Mcf.
Enerplus described its 2021 U.S. asset and takeover deals as “highly accretive and strategic” moves that foreshadow further growth.
The transactions “extended the company’s high quality drilling inventory to over a decade,” said Enerplus. “Year end 2021 net proved reserves increased by 163%. . . and gross proved plus probable reserves increased by 45%.”
Enerplus president Ian Dundas said, “The depth of our North Dakota inventory and our operational scale have substantially increased following our 2021 acquisitions.”
Enerplus reported 2021 earnings of $234.4 million ($0.93/share), reversing 2020 losses of $693 million ($3.12/share). Fourth-quarter 2021 earnings were $176.9 million or (68 cents/share), up from 2020 losses of $161.5 million (73 cents/share).
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