Delphi Energy Corp.
TSX : DEE

Delphi Energy Corp.

February 17, 2011 04:30 ET

Delphi Energy Winter Program Delivering Results

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Feb. 17, 2011) - Delphi Energy Corp. (TSX:DEE) ("Delphi" or "the Company") is pleased to provide the following update to its ongoing operations.

OPERATIONS UPDATE

Delphi's active winter program will result in 17 horizontal and vertical wells (11.8 net) targeting light oil and liquids-rich natural gas across the core areas of Wapiti/Gold Creek, Bigstone and Hythe. Thirteen wells (9.4 net) have been drilled and are in various stages of completion with the remaining four wells (2.4 net) to be finished drilling prior to spring break-up. The three wells tested to date are meeting or exceeding expectations and early well data indicates the remaining 14 wells in the program will also be successful.

Highlights include:

  • At Wapiti/Gold Creek, the Company has drilled and tested three vertical natural gas wells (2.6 net) with gross initial test rates ranging from 2,600 to 8,000 mcf/d of liquids-rich natural gas. An additional five wells (4.5 net) are in the process of being drilled, completed and tied-in;

  • At Bigstone, the Company has drilled, completed and is currently testing four horizontal Cardium oil wells (0.7 net). An additional horizontal Cardium oil well (0.6 net) is currently drilling; and

  • At Hythe, the Company has drilled and is in the process of completing two horizontal Doe Creek oil wells (1.4 net). An additional horizontal Doe Creek oil well (1.0 net) will be drilled, completed and tied-in prior to spring break-up.

Wapiti/Gold Creek

Nikanassin Liquids-Rich Natural Gas Program

At Wapiti/Gold Creek, the winter program is well underway with plans to drill eight vertical wells (7.1 net) prior to spring break-up. The program is targeting natural gas in the Nikanassin and additional uphole Cretaceous intervals that have liquids content of up to 120 barrels per million cubic feet of gas resulting in a production stream that is 46 percent, high netback liquids. The wells being drilled are a combination of offsets to previous successes and step-out locations that will generate further low risk drilling inventory.

To date, three wells (2.6 net) have been drilled and tested with test rates ranging from 2,600 to 8,000 mcf/d and an average liquids content of 80 barrels per million cubic feet of gas resulting in an average rate of 1,050 boe/d per well. Three additional wells (2.7 net) have been drilled and are in various stages of completion and two more wells (1.8 net) are currently drilling and will reach total depth prior to the end of February with completions, equipping and tie-in operations planned for March. Although demand for completion services remains high, the Company has been able to secure the required services with minimal delay and expects to complete all planned activities prior to spring break-up.

Based on the GLJ Independent Engineering Report for the year ending December 31, 2010, average gross proved plus probable reserves of the undeveloped locations in the Wapiti reserve report are approximately 475,000 barrels of oil equivalent "boe" per well resulting in robust project finding and development costs below $6.00 per boe. The GLJ reserve assignments for the area are based on one-eighth to one-quarter of a section drainage area per well. Full development in the area may require four to eight wells per section. The Company has regulatory approval to drill up to four wells per section in the Wapiti/Gold Creek area and continued success is generating an expanding inventory of low risk, high return drilling opportunities on the 78 sections (48 net sections) of land owned by the Company.

The Company is forecasting production from the area to increase to approximately 2,800 boe/d (45 percent NGL's) by the end of 2011, up from 300 boe/d in late 2009 when the area assets were acquired.

Bigstone

Cardium Light Oil Program

At Bigstone the Company continues to exploit the Cardium light oil play with five horizontal wells (1.3 net) utilizing multi-stage fracture technology planned for the winter program. The Company has drilled and completed four horizontal wells (0.7 net) with flowback of completion fluid ongoing. Flowing conditions during clean-up operations indicate these wells should have similar rates to Delphi's offsetting horizontal wells discussed in the operational update of December 15, 2010. One additional well (0.6 net) is currently drilling and will reach total depth prior to the end of February with completion, equipping and tie-in operations planned for March.

The Company's is continuing to license offsetting horizontal wells in preparation for additional drilling in the second half of 2011 and beyond.

Hythe

Doe Creek Light Oil Program

As part of the winter program the Company will drill three horizontal wells (2.4 net) targeting light oil in the Doe Creek interval bringing Delphi's total Doe Creek horizontal oil well count to 11 wells (8.4 net). Delphi has drilled two wells (1.4 net) and is awaiting completion services for the planned multi-stage fracture stimulations. One well (1.0 net) remains to be drilled, completed and tied-in prior to spring break-up.

Based on continued success and favourable netbacks associated with the Doe Creek opportunities, the Company is continuing to license offsetting horizontal wells in preparation for additional drilling in the second half of 2011.

Nikanassin and Cretaceous Natural Gas Program

In addition, the Company has drilled one vertical well (1.0 net) targeting the Nikanassin and multiple uphole Cretaceous intervals. Based on electric logs the well has several potential gas zones and initial completion operations are ongoing in the Nikanassin interval. Multiple locations have been identified on offsetting Company lands. In aggregate, the Company has 256 sections (183 net sections) of land in the Hythe area.

The Company looks forward to providing further updates as the winter drilling program progresses.

HEDGING

As in prior years, the Company's risk management program provides stability to the Company's cash flow, ensuring a defined level of capital spending. The Company now has approximately 52 percent of its natural gas production for 2011 hedged at an average minimum floor price of $4.93 per mcf. The Company has the following hedges in place:

    Jan - Mar 2011     Apr - Sep 2011     Oct - Dec 2011  
Volume Hedged (mmcf/d)   16.1     23.5     17.2  
Price (Cdn $/mcf)   5.24     4.77     4.90  
Percentage Hedged *   41 %   60 %   44 %
* based on 39,000 mcf/d.         

David J. Reid, President and Chief Executive Officer of Delphi Energy Corp. is scheduled to appear at the National Bank Financial Junior Energy Conference in Toronto on Thursday, February 17, 2011. A copy of the presentation by David J. Reid will be available for viewing on Delphi's website (www.delphienergy.ca) following the event.

Delphi Energy is a Calgary-based company that explores, develops and produces oil and natural gas in Western Canada. The Company is managed by a proven technical team. Delphi trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol DEE.

Forward-Looking Statements. This management discussion and analysis contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities laws. The use of any of the words "expect", "anticipate", "continue", "estimate", may", "will", "should", believe", "intends", "forecast", "plans", "guidance" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements or information.

More particularly and without limitation, this management discussion and analysis contains forward-looking statements and information relating to the Company's risk management program, petroleum and natural gas production, future funds from operations, capital programs, commodity prices, costs and debt levels. The forward-looking statements and information are based on certain key expectations and assumptions made by Delphi, including expectations and assumptions relating to prevailing commodity prices and exchange rates, applicable royalty rates and tax laws, future well production rates, the performance of existing wells, the success of drilling new wells, the capital availability to undertake planned activities and the availability and cost of labour and services.

Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements and information are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Since forward-looking statements and information address future events and conditions, by their very nature they involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those currently anticipated due to a number of factors and risks. These include, but are not limited to, the risks associated with the oil and gas industry in general such as operational risks in development, exploration and production, delays or changes in plans with respect to exploration or development projects or capital expenditures, the uncertainty of estimates and projections relating to production rates, costs and expenses, commodity price and exchange rate fluctuations, marketing and transportation, environmental risks, competition, the ability to access sufficient capital from internal and external sources and changes in tax, royalty and environmental legislation. Additional information on these and other factors that could affect the Company's operations or financial results are included in reports on file with the applicable securities regulatory authorities and may be accessed through the SEDAR website (www.sedar.com). The forward-looking statements and information contained in this press release are made as of the date hereof for the purpose of providing the readers with the Company's expectations for the coming year. The forward-looking statements and information may not be appropriate for other purposes. Delphi undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements or information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless so required by applicable securities laws.

Basis of Presentation. For the purpose of reporting production information, reserves and calculating unit prices and costs, natural gas volumes have been converted to a barrel of oil equivalent (boe) using six thousand cubic feet equal to one barrel. A boe conversion ratio of 6:1 is based upon an energy equivalency conversion method primarily applicable at the burner tip and does not represent a value equivalency at the wellhead. This conversion conforms with the Canadian Securities Administrators' National Instrument 51-101 when boes are disclosed. Boes may be misleading, particularly if used in isolation.

Non-GAAP Measures. The MD&A contains the terms "funds from operations", "funds from operations per share", "net debt" and "netbacks" which are not recognized measures under Canadian generally accepted accounting principles. The Company uses these measures to help evaluate its performance. Management considers netbacks an important measure as it demonstrates its profitability relative to current commodity prices. Management uses funds from operations to analyze performance and considers it a key measure as it demonstrates the Company's ability to generate the cash necessary to fund future capital investments and to repay debt. Funds from operations is a non-GAAP measure and has been defined by the Company as net earnings plus the addback of non-cash items (depletion, depreciation and accretion, stock-based compensation, future income taxes and unrealized gain/(loss) on risk management activities) and excludes the change in non-cash working capital related to operating activities and expenditures on asset retirement obligations and reclamation. The Company also presents funds from operations per share whereby amounts per share are calculated using weighted average shares outstanding consistent with the calculation of earnings per share. Delphi's determination of funds from operations may not be comparable to that reported by other companies nor should it be viewed as an alternative to cash flow from operating activities, net earnings or other measures of financial performance calculated in accordance with Canadian GAAP. The Company has defined net debt as the sum of long term debt plus working capital excluding the current portion of future income taxes and risk management asset/liability. Net debt is used by management to monitor remaining availability under its credit facilities.

Contact Information

  • Delphi Energy Corp.
    David J. Reid
    President & CEO
    (403) 265-6171
    (403) 265-6207 (FAX)
    or
    Delphi Energy Corp.
    Brian P. Kohlhammer
    V.P. Finance & CFO
    (403) 265-6171
    (403) 265-6207 (FAX)
    or
    Delphi Energy Corp.
    300, 500 - 4 Avenue S.W.
    Calgary, Alberta
    T2P 2V6
    info@delphienergy.ca
    www.delphienergy.ca