ATP Oil & Gas Records First Quarter Loss

ATP Oil & Gas Corporation (Nasdaq: ATPG) announced first quarter 2006 results and an operations update.
  • Commenced first production from three material projects:
  • Mississippi Canyon 711 ("MC 711") in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico,
  • Tors in the U.K. North Sea, and
  • L-06d in the Dutch North Sea;
  • Achieved the final goal of the Employee Volvo Challenge by attaining a first quarter production exit rate of 160 MMcfe/d;
  • Recorded production of 5.9 Bcfe or an average of 66 MMcfe/d for the first quarter;
  • Improved financial strength with the issuance of a US $150.0 million Series B Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock;
  • Acquired Green Canyon Block 37, a property with logged oil and gas zones;
  • Recorded revenue of US $45.2 million and a net loss available to common shareholders of US $9.9 million;
  • Since the beginning of 2006, added 25 Bcfe of cash flow hedges for 2006 and 2007 at an average price of US $10.94/Mcfe (US $10.58/Mcfe for 2006 and US $11.34/Mcfe for 2007)

Results of Operations

Natural gas and oil production was 5.9 Bcfe for the first quarter, compared to 5.8 Bcfe in the first quarter 2005. Compared to the first quarter 2005, first quarter U.S. natural gas price realizations increased 21% to US $7.40 per Mcf, North Sea natural gas price realizations increased 19% to US $9.48 per Mcf, and crude oil price realizations increased 11% to US $44.72 per barrel. As a result of an increase in average realized prices and average sales volumes, natural gas and oil revenues were US $45.2 million for the first quarter, compared to US $37.0 million for the first quarter 2005.

Hurricane related repairs continued to impact the first quarter 2006 with lease operating expenses (LOE) in the Gulf of Mexico totaling US $9.9 million and with approximately 30% associated with properties that did not contribute to production. For those properties with production, LOE amounted to US $1.28 per Mcfe. LOE in the North Sea was US $1.36 per Mcfe. For the first quarter 2005, LOE per Mcfe was US $0.74 in the Gulf of Mexico and US $1.24 in the North Sea.

General and administrative expense (G&A) totaled US $5.8 million for the first quarter, compared to US $4.2 million for the first quarter 2005. The increase was primarily due to higher costs for personnel, professional and legal fees, partially offset by lower administrative expenses associated with geological/geophysical activities.

Depreciation, depletion, and amortization (DD&A) per Mcfe was US $2.91 for the first quarter, compared to US $3.55 for the first quarter 2005. The lower rate for 2006 compared to 2005 is primarily due to one of our higher cost producing properties being shut-in during 2006 while awaiting the completion of hurricane related repairs.

ATP recorded a net loss available to common shareholders of US $9.9 million or US $0.34 per basic and diluted share in the first quarter, compared to net income available to common shareholders in the first quarter 2005 of US $1.0 million or US $0.03 per basic and diluted share. Results from the first quarter 2006 were impacted by the destructive aftermath of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and the resultant industry rush to complete repairs and reconstruction efforts in an atmosphere of scarce resources and ever increasing costs due to the demand for such services.

The Company's selected operating statistics and financial information, included within this press release, contain additional information on our activities for the first quarter 2006 and comparable period in 2005.

NOTE: All figures are in USD unless otherwise stated.

                                                   Three Months Ended
                                                       March 31,
                                                  --------------------
                                                    2006       2005
                                                   --------  ---------
Selected Operating Statistics

Production
  Natural gas (MMcf)                                 5,033      4,594
  Oil and condensate (MBbls)                           150        198
  Natural gas equivalents (MMcfe)                    5,935      5,779
   Gulf of Mexico (MMcfe)                            5,326      5,238
   North Sea (MMcfe)                                   608        541

Average Prices (includes effect of cash
flow hedges)
  Natural gas (per Mcf)                               7.65       6.32
   Natural gas (per Mcf) - GOM                        7.40       6.10
   Natural gas (per Mcf) - N. Sea                     9.48       7.97
  Oil and condensate (per Bbl) - GOM                 44.72      40.15
  Natural gas, oil and condensate (per Mcfe)          7.62       6.40
  Lease operating expense (per Mcfe)                  1.80       0.79
   Lease operating expense (per Mcfe) - GOM           1.85       0.74
   Lease operating expense (per Mcfe) - N. Sea        1.36       1.24

Other Expenses, per Mcfe
  Depreciation, depletion and amortization (DD&A)     2.91       3.55
   DD&A - GOM                                         2.82       3.50
   DD&A - N. Sea                                      3.67       4.03

Selected Financial Data
(In Thousands, Except Per Share Data)

Oil and gas revenues, including settled
 derivatives (1)                                    45,225     36,980
Net income (loss)                                   (3,045)     1,000
Preferred dividends                                 (6,818)         -
Net income (loss) available to common
 shareholders                                       (9,863)     1,000
Per share, basic and diluted                         (0.34)      0.03

Average number of common shares outstanding
 Basic                                              29,435     28,924
                                                   ========  =========
 Diluted                                            29,435     29,782
                                                   ========  =========

(1) See oil and gas revenue reconciliation on the last page of this
    press release.

Acquisitions

Central Gulf of Mexico Offshore Lease Sale -- ATP acquired Green Canyon 37 at the Central Gulf of Mexico Offshore Lease Sale held in March. The block contains two hydrocarbon-bearing pay sands, an oil zone and a gas zone, with approximately 140 feet of net pay from both zones. Development of this property is scheduled to begin in late 2007 or 2008. ATP is the operator of Green Canyon 37 with a 100% working interest.

Operations and Development

Gulf of Mexico Shelf -- Since the beginning of 2006, development operations have occurred at South Marsh Island 166, High Island 74, and Ship Shoal 358 (SS 358). During the second quarter, we expect to spud two new wells, one at West Cameron 663 and another at West Cameron 462. Both of these wells are scheduled to be completed in the third quarter and on production before the end of the year. SS 358 resumed production on April 7, 2006, following hurricane related repairs.

Gulf of Mexico Deepwater -- On March 9, 2006, at MC 711, ATP announced first production from the MC 711 #4 ST 1 well. The second well, the MC 711 #6, commenced production on March 14, 2006; however, both wells did not flow simultaneously until March 30, 2006. The start-up phase of the field is progressing, and net production should reach approximately 100 MMcfe/d early in the third quarter. The highest daily production rate at MC 711 achieved as of the date of this press release occurred on April 28, 2006, at 85 MMcfe/d.

The second phase of development at MC 711 is scheduled to commence mid-2006 and will include additional developmental drilling plus the installation of a subsea manifold. ATP is the operator of MC 711 with a 100% working interest.

North Sea -- On April 3, 2006, ATP announced first production from the Kilmar K1 well at its Tors development located in Block 43/22 ("Kilmar" field) of the Southern Gas Basin of the U.K. North Sea. Net production in the second quarter at Tors is expected to average 30 - 40 MMcfe/d. A second well, Kilmar K2, is currently drilling and should be completed in the third quarter. When fully developed, Tors is expected to have at least four producing wells with net production of 50 - 75 MMcfe/d. ATP is the operator of Tors with a 85% working interest.

Platform and facilities construction at Wenlock (formerly Venture) is ongoing and should be completed during the third quarter. Drilling is scheduled to begin late in 2006, and first production is expected during the first half of 2007. ATP is the operator of Wenlock with a 100% working interest.

On February 27, 2006, we announced first production at L-06d in the Dutch North Sea. Net ATP production at L-06d is expected to reach a facilities limit of 15 - 20 MMcfe/d following completion of the start-up phase at the host platform, G-17. ATP is the operator of L-06d with a 50% working interest.

Second Quarter 2006 Production and Operations Update

The step change in second quarter production is well underway. For the month of April, production averaged approximately 155 MMcfe/d, compared to 70 MMcfe/d for March. On May 8, 2006 production hit a peak of 188 MMcfe/d. We are still in the start-up phases at MC 711, Tors, and L-06d, and we expect to build on these production volumes for the remainder of the second quarter. The Company anticipates that for the entire second quarter production will average in excess of 160 MMcfe/d. We also reiterate our 2006 production estimate of 150 - 200 MMcfe/d for the entire year.

LOE per Mcfe should continue to improve with our recent increase in production and SS 358, previously off production due to the hurricanes, returning to production on April 7, 2006. We reiterate an LOE rate approaching USD 1.00 per Mcfe for all of 2006.

Capital Resources and Liquidity

During the first quarter, ATP issued USD 150.0 million of Series B Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock. We received proceeds of USD 145.5 million from the offering, net of offering costs. The security does not have a stated maturity and bears a 12 1/2% non-cash dividend, which becomes payable in cash upon the earlier of full repayment of our existing Term Loan or April 15, 2011.

Cash flow from operating activities was US $28.8 million during the first quarter, compared to US $10.7 million in cash flow from operating activities for the same period in 2005. Cash flow from operating activities prior to changes in assets and liabilities, a non-GAAP measure frequently used by research analysts, was USD 19.5 million for the first quarter, compared to US $23.4 million for the same period in 2005.

At March 31, 2006, ATP had working capital of US $47.0 million, compared to US $0.6 million at December 31, 2005. ATP had US $138.1 million in cash and cash equivalents on hand at March 31, 2006, compared to US $65.6 million in cash and cash equivalents at December 31, 2005. Cash paid for acquisition and development activities for the three months ended March 31, 2006, was US $96.1 million, compared to US $42.3 million in the same period in 2005.

We have been active in the derivatives market this year. Since the beginning of 2006, we have purchased crude oil puts and entered into crude and natural gas swaps and fixed forward sales representing approximately 25 Bcfe of production at an average hedge price of US $10.94/Mcfe. In total for 2006 and 2007, we have 32 Bcfe hedged at an average price of US $10.75/Mcfe.

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