Mission accomplished, Lundin says

Swedish energy company said it can grow even if oil drops back to $40 per barrel.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |  Nov. 2, 2016 at 8:17 AM
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STOCKHOLM, Sweden, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- The top executive at Swedish energy company Lundin Petroleum said it's "mission accomplished" as strong production gains helped lift its revenue.

Lundin, which focuses much of its operations on developments offshore Norway, said revenue for the nine months ending in September came it at $774 million, up more than 70 percent from the same period last year.

"For the third quarter in a row, it is mission accomplished and never before has the company been so well positioned for its next growth phase," Lundin President and CEO Alex Schneiter said in a statement.

Net production for the company more than doubled from the same period last year and its operating cash flow of $667 million was up more than 25 percent from third quarter 2015.

Schneiter ascended to president and CEO one year ago after taking over for Ashley Heppenstall, who led the company since 2002. The shakeup came after Lundin in early 2015 joined its peers struggling to navigate the weak crude oil market by announcing it would cut its spending plans that year by 31 percent. In April, the company completed the sale of its Indonesia business, which focused largely on natural gas operations.

Norwegian major Statoil in January spent $538 million to acquire an 11.9 percent stake in Lundin. Both sides said it was a transformative deal as it consolidated focus on the Edvard Grieg and larger Johan Sverdrup fields offshore Norway.

Edvard Grieg production was 26 percent higher for Lundin than during the second quarter and the company said it was confident enough to raise its full-year forecast for production by about 7 percent at the low end. On the future, Schneiter said there was a clear road ahead.

"With around $1 billion of liquidity headroom, our balance sheet is able to sustain long term oil prices as low as $40 per barrel," he said.

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