Gulfport Energy Hires Debt Restructuring Advisers

On Tuesday MDN told you that Chesapeake Energy has hired “debt restructuring advisers,” to help the company figure out how to stay afloat with $9 billion worth of outstanding debt (see Chesapeake Energy Hires “Restructuring Advisers”). Now comes word that Gulfport Energy, a major Utica Shale driller, has also hired debt restructuring advisers to help it with some $2 billion worth of outstanding debt.
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Judge Rules Tug Hill Not on Hook to Buy Gulfport OH Marc. Assets

A kerfuffle between Gulfport Energy and Tug Hill Operating has been settled by a Texas judge. Gulfport and Tug Hill cut a deal in November 2018 for Tug Hill to purchase certain Marcellus shale assets in Ohio from Gulfport for $26 million. According to Gulfport, Tug Hill never sealed the deal and should be forced to complete it now. Tug Hill said Gulfport didn’t come through with necessary releases from third parties related to the deal, and therefore the deal is null and void. The judge agreed with Tug Hill.
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Ohio’s #3 Utica Driller, Gulfport Energy, Slashes 2020 Budget 50%

Last Friday the Ohio Utica’s third-largest (by the number of wells drilled) shale driller, Gulfport Energy, filed its fourth-quarter and full-year 2019 update. The bad news is that the company lost just over $2 billion in 2019. The good news is that the entire loss was an impairment charge, a “paper loss” and not an actual, out-of-pocket money loss. When you dig deeper into the numbers, you’ll find the company actually produced free cash flow of $37.8 million last year.
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Gulfport’s Largest Investor Wants to Pack Board, Force Change

Last November Gulfport Energy, the Ohio Utica’s third-largest driller, announced they would lay off 13% of their workforce, end (for now) their stock share buy-back program, and “refresh” the board with three new members (see Gulfport Fires 13% of Workers, Ends Stock Buy-Back, Board Changes). Since that time they’ve added another two new board members, making the turnover five total (see Gulfport Continues Board “Refreshment” – 5th Change in 2 Months). Who lit a fire under Gulfport? That would be Firefly Value Partners, Gulfport’s single largest investor. Firefly and Gulfport are in another public spat over adding yet more new board members.
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Gulfport Continues Board “Refreshment” – 5th Change in 2 Months

Valerie Jochen

In mid-November Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), announced they would lay off 13% of their workforce, end (for now) their stock share buy-back program, and “refresh” the board with three new members (see Gulfport Fires 13% of Workers, Ends Stock Buy-Back, Board Changes). Five weeks later and the company announced yet another new board member (see Gulfport Continues Board “Refreshment” – 4th Change in 5 Weeks). And now, a fifth new board member in just a little over two months. What’s going on?
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S&P Downgrades Credit Rating for Six Big Marcellus/Utica Drillers

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Large Marcellus/Utica drillers continue to take it on the chin in the financial markets. The stock prices for almost all M-U drillers have tanked, and now (at least for some of them), their credit ratings have been downgraded too. Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings recently downgraded the credit rating for six of the biggest M-U drillers…
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EPA Fines Gulfport $1.7M for Clean Air Violations in Ohio Utica

Yesterday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced it has reached a settlement with Gulfport Energy over alleged air emissions violations found at 17 well pad locations Gulfport operates in the Ohio Utica. The violations happened in 2015. The settlement includes Gulfport paying $1.7 million in fines and spending another $2 million in “improvements” to cut down on volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions at the 17 well pads.
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Gulfport Continues Board “Refreshment” – 4th Change in 5 Weeks

In mid-November Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), announced they are laying off 13% of their workforce, ending (for now) their stock share buy-back program, and “refreshing” the board with three new members (see Gulfport Fires 13% of Workers, Ends Stock Buy-Back, Board Changes). Here it is five weeks later and the company has just announced yet another new board member, the fourth new member in five weeks. What’s going on?
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Gulfport’s Biggest Shareholder Says Current Board has Made a Mess

Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays. Earlier this week the company made a major announcement: They are laying off 13% of the workforce, ending (for now) their stock share buy-back program, and “refreshing” the board with three new members (see Gulfport Fires 13% of Workers, Ends Stock Buy-Back, Board Changes). According to Gulfport’s largest shareholder, investment firm Firefly Value Partners, those changes are not enough.
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Gulfport Fires 13% of Workers, Ends Stock Buy-Back, Board Changes

Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays. A few weeks ago the company announced they are shopping some of their non-operated assets in the Ohio Utica (see Gulfport 3Q – Looking to Sell Non-Operated Utica Assets). This morning the company made another major announcement: They are laying off 13% of the workforce, ending (for now) their stock share buy-back program, and “refreshing” the board with three new members.
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Gulfport 3Q – Looking to Sell Non-Operated Utica Assets

Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays. Gulport’s third quarter 2019 update shows the company produced 1,527.0 million cubic feet equivalent per day (MMcfe/d) in 3Q19, up 7% from 1,427.5 MMcfe/d produced in 3Q18. The company lost $48.8 million (31 cents per share) in 3Q19. The biggest news, for us, is Gulfport’s announcement they are shopping some of their non-operated assets in the Ohio Utica.
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Major Investor Lectures Gulfport Energy to Cut 2020 Budget by 29%

Shah Capital, which owns three million shares (about 1.9%) of Gulfport Energy stock, last week sent an open letter to the Gulfport board strongly recommending the company trim next year’s budget by 29% (maybe more) in an effort to generate more cash for investors. Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays.
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Rice Addresses Belmont County, OH Landowners in Town Hall Mtg

EQT’s new CEO Toby Rice made the rounds and conducted four town hall-style meetings with landowners (see Road Trip! EQT CEO Toby Rice Talks to Landowners in Town Hall Mtgs). We found and brought you local media coverage for both the first and third meetings–in Waynesburg, PA and Bridgeport, WV, respectively (see EQT CEO Toby Rice Hits a Home Run with Landowner Meetings and EQT CEO Toby Rice Explains Combo Drilling at WV Town Hall Mtg). There was a meeting in between those two, held in Belmont County, OH. We’ve been accused of bias for not writing about that meeting.
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Gulfport 2Q: Drills 4 New Utica Wells, Completes 25 Utica Wells

Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres), concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays. The company released its operating and financial update for 2Q19 last week. As we told you in May, 2019 is “the year of the DUC” for Gulfport (see Gulfport Energy Sells “Small” Marcellus Leasehold in SE Ohio). And so it has been.
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Gulfport Energy Sells “Small” Marcellus Leasehold in SE Ohio

Gulfport Energy, one of the biggest drillers in the Ohio Utica Shale (210,000 acres) with record production in the Utica last year, announced last week (as part of its first quarter update) it has sold a “small footprint” of Marcellus drilling rights on some of their Utica acreage in southeastern Ohio for $30 million. Gulfport concentrates its drilling in the Ohio Utica and the Oklahoma SCOOP plays. Piecing together the company’s plans for this year, we’re calling 2019 the “Year of the DUC” for Gulfport.
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