Venture Production Reports Results

Mike Wagstaff, CEO of Venture said: "2005 was a year of focus and delivery for Venture, during which we saw the impact of our North Sea development program, which commenced in 2004. We brought three brand new fields on stream and successfully completed a further nine 'in-field' investment projects. This development activity led to a 77% increase in production which in turn delivered record financial performance. As a result of our withdrawal from operations in Trinidad, Venture is now strategically focused as a pure North Sea development and production operator.

We made seven acquisitions during the year, which has further expanded our inventory of oil and gas fields for future development. In addition, we have put in place the long-term strategic relationships with our key contractors to give us access to the equipment and services to enable us to deliver sustained growth in a very tight market. 2006 has got off to an excellent start and we are looking at a substantial further increase in production this year. Longer term, with only one third of our 30 North Sea fields on stream, we have the asset base, the team and the key partnerships in place to continue to deliver steady and sustained growth for the foreseeable future."

Operational Highlights

  • Average annual production increased 77% to 29,864 boepd (2004: 16,832 boepd)
  • Three new fields on stream - Annabel, Gadwall and Saturn - and nine additional 'in- field' development projects completed
  • Withdrawal from Trinidad operations completed - Venture is now a focused North Sea player
  • Three new developments sanctioned - Goosander, Chestnut and Mimas
  • Seven acquisitions in 2005 - 45.4 MMboe of proven and probable ("2P") reserves added for £23 million
  • 29% increase in year-end 2P reserves to 161.2 MMboe (2004: 124.9 MMboe), a reserves' replacement ratio of over 400%

Financial Highlights

  • Revenue more than doubled to £164.1 million (2004: £81.5 million)
  • Underlying operating profit pre IFRS adjustments up 259% to £83.0 million (2004: £23.1 million)
  • Profit on ordinary activities after tax of £31.1 million (2004: £6.9 million loss)
  • Operating cashflow up 76% to £77.7 million (2004: £44.1 million)
  • Capital expenditure, including acquisitions, totaled £208 million (2004: £99.4 million)

2006 Outlook

  • Strong production performance - record first quarter average production 44,272 boepd
  • Development program on track to deliver strong growth in 2006 and Beyond
  • Guidance of average production for full year 2006; 40,000 - 42,000 boepd