Recent Acquisitions by Crescent Point Energy Corp. Highlight Why it Is the Best Oil Play in the Patch
Despite falling assets prices because of the sharp collapse in oil prices, there has been a dearth of mergers and acquisitions activity in Canada’s energy patch. Nonetheless, serial acquirer Crescent Point Energy Corp. (TSX:CPG)(NYSE:CPG) remains active, picking up bargain-priced assets that enhance its existing core operations. In fact, it recently announced its second acquisition in as many months, and these acquisitions will boost its ability to weather the current storm in oil prices.
Crescent Point’s most recent acquisition involves the purchasing of all the issued and outstanding shares of Coral Hill Energy Ltd. On completion, this transaction will give Crescent Point complete ownership of Coral Hill’s Swan Hills assets located in northwest Alberta, while adding productive capacity of 3,200 barrels of oil daily and boosting its reserves by almost 18 million barrels.
It comes just over a month after Crescent Point announced the acquisition of Legacy Oil + Gas Inc. for $1.53 billion. This acquisition added 22,000 barrels of oil to its total daily output and significantly boosted its presence in its core operating areas of southeast Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and North Dakota.
More importantly, it has also bulked up Crescent Point’s presence in a range of low-cost Bakken oil plays, with analysts estimating that the southeast Saskatchewan Bakken alone has a breakeven price of US$46 per barrel. The low costs associated with operating in Saskatchewan and Manitoba are, in fact, a key driver for Crescent Point’s ongoing focus on oil plays in these regions. The first-quarter 2015 oil output from southeast Saskatchewan and Manitoba was boosted by 20%. Crescent Point is concentrating its drilling activity in those areas because they account for 62% of its completed wells for that period.
Furthermore, with these assets located around Crescent Point’s core holdings, it will be able to drive lower operating costs through economies of scale, while expanding its more economic oil production.
The importance of these purchases in the current operating environment can’t be stressed enough. They have allowed Crescent Point to yet again increase its 2015 production forecast to 163,500 barrels of oil daily, which is 7% higher than its original 2015 guidance. This is particularly important because it will enhance revenues and cash flows in a harsh operating environment, where growth is proving increasingly difficult because of sharply lower oil prices.
When considered in conjunction with Crescent Point’s hedging program, the acquisitions enhance the sustainability of its dividend, which is under increasing pressure because of the negative impact that low crude prices have had on cash flows.
Despite oil prices remaining stubbornly low, Crescent Point remains in a solid position to not only weather the current storm, but to profit from it.
You see, because of its solid balance sheet and focus on preserving cash flow through exploiting low-cost oil plays, Crescent Point is well positioned to take advantage of lower asset prices and sustain growth through acquisitions. Investors will continue to be rewarded by that monster double-digit yield while they wait for oil prices to bounce back and trigger a rally in its share price. For these reasons, I believe that Crescent Point remains one of the best bargain buys in the patch.
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Fool contributor Matt Smith has no position in any stocks mentioned.
Despite falling assets prices because of the sharp collapse in oil prices, there has been a dearth of mergers and acquisitions activity in Canada?s energy patch. Nonetheless, serial acquirer Crescent Point Energy Corp. (TSX:CPG)(NYSE:CPG) remains active, picking up bargain-priced assets that enhance its existing core operations. In fact, it recently announced its second acquisition in as many months, and these acquisitions will boost its ability to weather the current storm in oil prices.
Crescent Point?s most recent acquisition involves the purchasing of all the issued and outstanding shares of Coral Hill Energy Ltd. On completion, this transaction will give…