Are Oil and Gas Bankruptcies a Thing of the Past?

Since the start of the oil downturn, more than 120 upstream and oilfield service companies declared bankruptcy. However, as we described in a previous post, the decision to file for bankruptcy did not always signal the demise of the business. Now more prepared, many E&P companies who reorganized are looking to grow.

2016 Oil and Gas: A Year in Review

2016 was a year to remember and a year to forget for many in the oil and gas industry. On the positive side, energy commodity prices curbed their downward, volatile nature by finishing the year at higher prices than where they started. In this post, we survey how the industry ended the year from production and supply to bankruptcies and transactions as we look to 2017.

Bountiful Barrels, Booms and….Bankruptcies?

Last month we learned something that might not be a shock to those closely following the oil and gas markets, but might be something of a bombshell to everyone else. A report from Rystad Energy estimated that in July 2016, for the first time ever, the United States has more recoverable oil than any other country on the planet – 264 billion barrels. What was the reward for E&P firms? Ironically, it has unfortunately turned out to be a long line at bankruptcy courts.

Oil and Gas Market Discussion: Part 2

In May 2016, we attended a panel event discussing investment opportunities in the financially distressed oil and gas sector. The panel included a “who’s who” of oil and gas experts located in Texas. Two industry participants, two consultants, one analyst and one economist discussed the economic outlook for energy prices and then corporate strategy and investment opportunities given the economic outlook. This post, the second and last summarizing this panel discussion, will report opinions given on corporate strategy and investment opportunities.

Bankruptcy: An Overview Part 3

Upon confirmation by the bankruptcy court, a bankruptcy plan must not be likely to result in liquidation or further reorganization. To satisfy the court, a cash-flow test is used to analyze whether the restructured company would generate enough cash to consistently pay its debts. This post walks through the three steps of a cash-flow test.

Bankruptcy: An Overview Part 2

From January through May of this year, 39 E&P companies and 31 oilfield services companies had to file for bankruptcy. This post is the second of three aimed at helping those companies and any others who may face bankruptcy in the future to understand the valuation-related aspects of Chapter 11 restructuring. In the first post, we highlighted two reorganization requirements tied to valuation. Here we will explore the consequences of the first of those requirements: The plan should demonstrate that the economic outcomes for the consenting stakeholders (creditors or equity holders) are superior under the Chapter 11 proceeding compared to a Chapter 7 proceeding, which provides for a liquidation of the business.

M&A Activity in the Bakken

In order to survive, when producing is no longer economically feasible, production companies are selling “non-core” assets to generate the cash. M&A activity of Bakken assets has slowed in 2016, but most Bakken assets are selling for heavy discounts making them attractive to buyers. This posts discusses some of these transactions in light of the current environment.

Bankruptcy: An Overview

In the current low pricing environment, many oil and gas companies are declaring bankruptcy. However, the decision to file for bankruptcy does not have to signal the demise of the business. If executed properly Chapter 11 reorganization in fact affords these financially distressed or insolvent companies an opportunity to restructure their liabilities and emerge as sustainable going concerns.

Bridging Valuation Gaps: Part 3

This is the third and final post in a series aimed at helping E&P companies to navigate the sale of non-core assets and bankruptcy by examining how option pricing, a sophisticated valuation technique, can be used to understand the future potential of the assets most affected by low prices, PUDs and unproven reserves. In this post, we delve into the specifics of adapting option pricing from shares of stock to oil and gas, highlighting some of the challenges and key steps of the process.

Bridging Valuation Gaps: Part 2

This is the second in a series of three blog posts aimed at helping E&P companies to navigate the sale of non-core assets and bankruptcy by examining how option pricing, a sophisticated valuation technique, can be used to understand the future potential of assets most affected by low prices, PUDs and unproven reserves. In this second installment we explain the general idea behind option pricing and why it may be more suited to a low price environment than traditional DCF models. Part three will then cover some of the issues that arise when using the option pricing method to value oil and gas companies’ assets.

Bridging Valuation Gaps: Part 1

Due to a precipitous drop in oil prices since June 2014, oil exploration and production companies in the US have struggled to pay their debts and in many cases have had to file for bankruptcy. This is the first post in a three part series examining how option pricing, a sophisticated valuation technique, can be used to understand the future potential of the assets most affected by low prices, PUDs and unproven reserves.