Antero Puts $1B M-U Assets for Sale; Shaves $350M from Midstream

Antero Resources is working hard to get the company on sound financial footing. That’s the message we took away from an announcement on Monday from the company that says (a) they’ve asked for and received a break in midstream (pipeline) prices from their own subsidiary, Antero Midstream, and (b) they’re putting some of their considerable Marcellus/Utica assets up for sale, hoping to raise upward of $1 billion.
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IEEFA Report Says Marcellus/Utica Drillers in Financial Trouble

Masquerading as a nonpartisan, independent nonprofit, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) reportedly “conducts research and analyses on financial and economic issues related to energy and the environment.” The Institute’s stated mission is “to accelerate the transition to a diverse, sustainable and profitable energy economy.” In other words, they’re anti-fossil fuels. We spotted an article appearing on OilPrice.com that quotes a new “study” issued by IEEFA. The article opens by saying, “drillers in Appalachia are in particularly bad shape.” Is it true? Is the end near? Is it a shalepocalypse?
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Antero Resources 3Q – Production Record High, Spending Record Low

Antero Resources, one of the biggest and best “pure play” drillers focused on the Marcellus/Utica (with major operations in West Virginia), released their third quarter update yesterday. The company reports producing an amazing 3.37 billion cubic feet equivalent per day (Bcfe/d) of natural gas production (32% liquids), while spending just $290 million to do it–the lowest quarterly spend since the company went public in 2013. On the down side, the company reported a $150 million net loss, but that’s mainly because of a one-time “impairment charge,” meaning it was a paper loss, not a cash out-of-pocket loss.
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Antero Resources Works Hard to Improve West Virginia’s Roads

The shale industry often gets a bad reputation for poor conditions along roadways where they operate–especially in West Virginia. In April, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice, who is pro-coal (because much of his personal fortune comes from coal), took a swipe at shale drillers claiming shale is responsible for the poor condition of roadways in the Mountain State (see WV Gov. Justice Blames Shale for Bad Roads, Wants Higher Taxes). However, the fact is the oil and gas industry has spent $110 million on secondary road repairs and improvements in just last five years (see Oil & Gas Industry has Already Spent $110M Fixing WV’s Bad Roads).
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Antero Idles WV Frack Wastewater Plant Launched 2 Years Ago

Antero Clearwater Treatment Facility – Pennsboro, WV (click for larger version)

Ace reporter Paul Gough at the Pittsburgh Business Times is reporting an exclusive: Antero Resources, which built and launched an innovative frack wastewater recycling facility in Doddridge County, WV less than two years ago at a cost of $300 million, has idled the plant and is considering selling it. Say what?
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M-U Companies Dominate Top 10 NatGas Producers in 2019

Quick: Which company which recently had a board and upper management shakeup and focuses exclusively on Marcellus/Utica drilling is the #1 natural gas producer in the United States? That’s right, EQT. In a list of the top 40 natgas producers in the U.S. (full list below), it’s striking to note that eight of the top 10 are focused exclusively or primarily on the M-U.
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LNG Virtual Pipe Co Stabilis Buys/Merges in American Electric

Stabilis Energy, based in Houston, TX, offers a complete range of fully integrated LNG fueling solutions from LNG production to LNG distribution and technical support across North America. Stabilis has just bought out and merged in another company, American Electric Technologies. And believe it or not, there IS a Marcellus/Utica tie-in.
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Antero Wins $96M Lawsuit Against DC Utility for Not Buying Gas

In 2016 WGL Midstream became an investor/joint venture partner in the Stonewall Gathering System, a system which gathers Antero Resources’ natural gas from several West Virginia counties (see M3’s Stonewall Gathering System in WV Gets New Investor/Partner). WGL Midstream is a subsidiary of Washington Gas Light Co., a utility servicing the Washington, D.C. area.
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Ohio Appeals Court Upholds Antero’s Right to Use Forced Pooling

The legal beagles at Vorys represented Antero Resources in a recently-decide case with far-reaching implications for Ohio drillers and landowners. The Vorys team won the case. As with most lawsuits, this one is complicated and gets in the weeds. The short short version is that under an original lease signed years ago, a landowner and drilling company (at that time) removed a section of the lease that allows the landowner’s property to be pooled (called “unitized” in Ohio) with other properties.
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WV Supreme Court Rejects Nuisance Lawsuit Against Antero

In Feb. 2016, lawsuits filed by some ~200 West Virginia residents against Antero Resources were combined into a class action (see More People Pile on Antero, Seek to Join Mass “Nuisance” Lawsuit). The lawsuits are called “nuisance” lawsuits because, according to the plantiffs, Antero is a nuisance to them (truck traffic, noise, lights at night, etc.). The collective class action nuisance lawsuit was appealed all the way to the WV Supreme Court. On Monday, the Supremes rejected the nuisance claims, granting Antero a big victory.
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Antero Resources Sues EnerQuest O&G Alleging Stolen Trade Secrets

Antero Resources sued EnerQuest Oil & Gas in a Texas court last year claiming EnerQuest had solicited and received trade secrets for a pair of landmen who live and work in Texas. A lower court dismissed the lawsuit based on a technicality (because the solicitation from EnerQuest came via email), claiming Texas does not have jurisdiction over the case. Antero disagrees and has just asked the Texas Supreme Court to review the case.
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Antero Resources 1Q19: Marcellus Economics Better than Utica

Antero Resources, one of the biggest Marcellus/Utica drillers (pure play) released first quarter 2019 numbers yesterday. The Mariner East 2 (ME2) pipeline, which Antero uses to ship and sell natural gas liquids (NGLs) had a huge beneficial effect for the company. Antero’s production was massive: 3.1 billion cubic feet equivalent per day (Bcfe/d) in 1Q19, up an astonishing 30% from 1Q18. But here’s the kicker: Nearly one-third of Antero’s production (29%) was NGLs. Without ME2, that big number would have been a small fraction of Antero’s production.
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Antero’s WV Frack Wastewater Plant “Best Project Like it in World”

Clearwater Facility

Antero Resources’ innovative wastewater recycling facility in Doddridge County, WV began operation in November 2017 (see Antero’s $275M WV Wastewater Recycling Facility Ready to Launch). Since that time, the Clearwater Facility has continued to expand. Today it operates at about 70% of its full capacity.
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Are Marcellus/Utica Shale Drillers Financially Healthy?

We read on a regular basis in mainstream media that shale companies spend more money than they bring in, and that investors are growing tired of pumping money into companies without a return on their investment. We’ve recently noticed a renewed commitment on the part of major drillers to get their financial houses in order–spend less and drill less in order to make more money. We spotted an article by Reuters on the “shale drillers aren’t profitable/healthy” meme which got us investigating the financial health (or lack thereof) for Marcellus/Utica drillers. What we found may interest you.
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Antero Resources 2018 – $398M Loss, Production Up 20%

Antero Resources, one of the biggest drillers in the Marcellus/Utica region (focused on wet gas drilling), released its full year and fourth quarter 2018 update last week. The company reports 2018 daily gas equivalent production averaged a record 2.7 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d)–up 20% over 2017. 4Q18 production averaged 3.2 Bcf/d, up 37% over 4Q17 (and up 18% from 4Q18). However, the company’s financial performance wasn’t as stellar.
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