Matahio Energy has completed the acquisition of a portfolio of six onshore oil and gas licenses in the Taranaki Basin, North Island, New Zealand.
Matahio will be the operator of these licenses, holding 100% participating interest in four licenses, and 70% interest in the remaining two licenses. Of the six licenses, three are currently producing. The sale and purchase agreement between the parties was signed in March 2022. All required approvals for the relevant New Zealand regulatory authorities have been obtained to complete this transaction
Key highlights of the transaction:
- Operatorship of two fields, namely Cheal and Sidewinder, which are currently producing a total of 1.4 Kboepd (thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day), net to Matahio. Cheal and Sidewinder are well-established, prolific fields, which have produced over 5 MM bbls (million barrels of oil) to date, since the first oil in 2008.
- Matahio is adding 2 MM boe (million barrels of oil equivalent) 2P reserves (Net, effective date 1st January 2023). At prevailing oil prices and contemporary OPEX rates, the Cheal and Sidewinder fields are expected to generate positive cash flow until 2030. The New Zealand business’s EBITDA for the calendar year 2022 was NZD$29 MM
- The transaction also includes full technical and operational teams, based in New Plymouth, who have a track record in delivering strong health, safety & environment (HSE) and production performance. Most notably, recent production optimisation efforts have resulted in production rates returning to 2015 levels without drilling any new wells.
- Matahio has crafted a multi-year development programme consisting of infill and step-out drilling as well as the appraisal of newer fields in the Puka license (which was 100% acquired by Matahio) to be tied back to existing operated infrastructure. This organic growth programme targets an additional 3.8 MM boe and, if successful, will ensure more than 100% replacement of reserves across Matahio’s portfolio. Coincident with this transaction, the first Cheal infill well as part of this programme is currently being completed.
- Matahio has constructed a bottom-up greenhouse gas reduction plan that projects the New Zealand business to be “net-zero” by 2030. A significant component of this plan is a deep decarbonization of the operation, for which a number of projects have been initiated in 2023, targeting an immediate impact on Matahio New Zealand’s carbon footprint.
- Under Matahio ownership, cash contributions will continue to be made to an escrow fund that ultimately covers future abandonment liabilities.
- Matahio Energy New Zealand has already committed to several Taranaki partnerships and sponsorships. This transaction now opens the door to other opportunities to collaborate with the Taranaki community.
Dr Wai-Lid Wong, CEO of Matahio Energy, says, “We are excited to progress the multi-dimensional plans we have laid out for this portfolio of assets in New Zealand.
“First and foremost, the execution of an expansive production optimisation and development programme, which has already borne fruit, will continue to exhibit Matahio’s mature field management credentials. This includes maintaining the portfolio’s OPEX per barrel at levels lower than 40 USD/bbl. Second, the proving-up of prospects in the Puka license area, and utilising existing infrastructure for its development, will enhance the longevity of our New Zealand business. And finally, to undertake a complex decarbonisation plan, which underpins our New Zealand net zero strategy and aims to demonstrate that this growth does not need to be at the expense of the environment.”
He added, “We are also keen to continue discussions with our industry peers, investors, government, and other key stakeholders to ensure that the oil and gas industry is effectively participating in an orderly energy transition in New Zealand, which supports the country achieving its overall net zero ambitions.”