PDC Energy, Weld County’s No. 3 oil and gas producer, reported continued production growth in the last year topped by its wells in the Wattenberg Field.
Because of production and continued cost savings in its three main drilling fields — the Wattenberg in Weld County, its Utica play in Ohio, and the Marcellus play in Pennsylvania — the company was able to turn the earnings corner, so to speak, after losing $120 million in 2012.
For 2013, the company recorded a net earning, before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, of $241 million, or $7.43 per diluted share.
PDC is No. 3 behind Anadarko Petroleum and Noble Energy in terms of production and acreage in the Wattenberg Field.
James Trimble, CEO and president of PDC, said 2013 was an excellent year for PDC.
“We once again achieved double-digit growth in production and reserves, while divesting of non-core dry gas assets and increasing our crude oil and NGLs (natural gas liquids) production mix,” Trimble said in a news release. “We intend to continue to focus on the accelerated development of our Wattenberg Field and Utica Shale properties in 2014 through execution of our drilling program, optimization of well performance and continued cost savings initiatives. These properties are generating excellent returns for PDC and our shareholders and provide significant potential for growth.”
PDC Energy officials reported a net production for the year of 20,355 barrels of oil equivalent in all three of its operations, a 35 percent increase from 2012. Production was on target throughout the year, coming in below 20,000 barrels of oil equivalent, but a year-end push helped the company eke out a few thousand more barrels of oil equivalent per day to push production above 26,000 barrels, and much more than the company’s projections for the fourth quarter.
Wattenberg drilling made up 80 percent of that with 16,269 barrels of oil equivalent per day for the year.
Throughout 2013, PDC drilled 70 wells in Weld County’s Wattenberg Field, and had four rigs running throughout the field.
The company plans to add a fifth rig in the Wattenberg in May.
The company expects from $461 million to $498 million in revenue for the year, up from $378 million in revenue last year.
For 2014, PDC plans to drill more than 200 wells through its three fields and is almost doubling its capital spending to do so.
In 2013, PDC spent $269 million in the Wattenberg, which is expected to go up to $467 million in 2014.
Average well costs in the Wattenberg remain at $4.2 million per horizontal well.
PDC is experiencing strong performance in both the Niobrara and Codell formations, both of which are more than 7,000 feet below the surface.