BP: Strong earnings driven by high reliability and major project delivery
“Our focus on safe and reliable operations and delivering our strategy is driving strong earnings and growing cash flow. Operations are running well across BP and we’re bringing new, higher-margin barrels into production faster through efficient project execution. We have made very good progress with our acquisition from BHP and expect to complete the transaction tomorrow. This will transform our position in the US Lower 48 and we expect it to create significant value for BP. This progress all underpins our commitment to growing distributions for our shareholders.”
Bob Dudley – Group chief executive
-Strong earnings and cash flow:
-Underlying replacement cost profit for the third quarter of 2018 was $3.8 billion, more than double a year earlier and the highest quarterly result in more than five years, including significant earnings growth from the Upstream and Rosneft.
-Operating cash flow excluding Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments for the quarter was $6.6 billion, including a $0.7 billion working capital build (after adjusting for inventory holding gains).
-Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments in the quarter were $0.5 billion on a post-tax basis.
-Dividend of 10.25 cents a share for the third quarter, 2.5% higher than a year earlier.
-Strong operating performance:
-Very good reliability, with the highest quarterly refining availability for 15 years and BP-operated Upstream plant reliability of 95%.
-Reported oil and gas production was 3.6 million barrels of oil equivalent a day. Upstream underlying production, which excludes Rosneft and is adjusted for portfolio changes and pricing effects, was 6.8% higher than a year earlier, driven by ramp-up of new projects. Rosneft production of 1.2 million barrels of oil equivalent a day was 2.8% higher than last year.
-The Thunder Horse Northwest expansion project in the Gulf of Mexico and the Western Flank B project in Australia began production in October, both ahead of schedule. They are BP’s fourth and fifth Upstream major projects to start up in 2018.
-Further expansion in fuels marketing, with now around 1,300 convenience partnership sites worldwide and network growth in Mexico.
-The acquisition from BHP is expected to complete on 31 October.
-Reflecting confidence in cash generation and continued capital discipline, and assuming oil prices remain firm in the recent trading range, BP now expects to fund the entire transaction from available cash, rather than using equity for the deferred consideration. In this case, proceeds from the associated $5-6 billion of divestments will be used to reduce net debt.
RC profit (loss), underlying RC profit, operating cash flow excluding Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments and working capital are non-GAAP measures. These measures and Upstream plant reliability, refining availability, major projects, inventory holding gains and losses, nonoperating items, fair value accounting effects and underlying production are defined in the Glossary on page 31.