Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (NYSE: APC) will sell its southwest Wyoming Moxa asset for about $350 million, the company said.
The Moxa gas-producing asset has seen a sharp decline in production since last year when volumes peaked in third-quarter 2016 at an average 86 million cubic feet per day (cf/d) of natural gas. For third-quarter 2017, production had fallen to 72 MMcf/d. Moxa also produces a small amount of NGL.
The buyer of the asset wasn’t disclosed by Anadarko. In February, Anadarko said it operated more than 960 wells in the Moxa Field in Wyoming and carried a nonoperating position in 430 wells.
The Moxa Arch is located in Lincoln, Sweetwater and Uinta counties, Wyo. In May, the company was marketing 163,000 net acres in the Moxa Arch, according to PLS Inc.
The sale is part of Anadarko’s goal of shifting production to a higher oil mix, Anadarko chairman and president and CEO Al Walker said in a news release. The sale also follows a general trend of public companies selling noncore assets to focus on higher-return development.
The company holds 4.2 million net acres in Wyoming, including a concentration of assets in the Powder River Basin.
As of Sept. 30, Anadarko’s consolidated balance sheet included long-term assets of $557 million and long-term liabilities of $37 million associated with the Moxa Arch assets held for sale.
“We have made significant progress in shifting our production mix toward higher-value oil, which has improved our margins per barrel by about 34% year-over-year,” Walker said. “We expect to improve our margins further as we finalize the sale of our Moxa gas asset, continue focusing investments in our high-quality oil plays and drive greater efficiencies into the system.”
On a Nov. 1 earnings call, Walker was asked about additional Wyoming sales, including the Powder River.
Walker said that in 2018 investors can expect that “we will continue to be a Delaware, DJ, deepwater Gulf of Mexico spender of capita,” Walker said, according to a seekingalpha.com transcript. “We think we see clarity and good returns. It’s very economic. It’s part of the things we’ve been messaging over the last year. It’s what we’re moving to and away from dry gas.”
The company guided down its fourth-quarter production by 13,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d) to reflect lingering effects by hurricanes. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma deferred about 840,000 boe of third-quarter production, the company said.
The company still expects to exit 2017 with oil volumes of about 150,000 barrels of oil per day (bbl/d) from the Delaware and Denver-Julesburg basins and more than 130,000 bbl/d from the GoM.
The company said in September it plans to buy back $2.5 billion in shares—including $1 billion in buybacks by the end of 2017. Anadarko ended third-quarter 2017 with $5.25 billion of cash on hand.
Darren Barbee can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.