Helmerich & Payne Underscores Second Quarter Earnings



Helmerich & Payne reported net income of $103,738,000 ($.98 per diluted share) from operating revenues of $520,300,000 for its second fiscal quarter ended March 31, 2009, compared with net income of $102,054,000 ($.96 per diluted share) from operating revenues of $473,644,000 during last year's second fiscal quarter ended March 31, 2008. Included in second quarter net income for 2009 and 2008 were $.01 and $.04 per share, respectively, of after-tax gains from the sale of portfolio securities and drilling equipment.

For the six months ended March 31, 2009, the Company reported net income of $249,013,000 ($2.34 per diluted share) from operating revenues of $1,144,054,000 compared with net income of $209,884,000 ($1.98 per diluted share) from operating revenues of $930,307,000 during the six months ended March 31, 2008. Included in net income for the first six months of 2009 and 2008 were $.02 and $.07 per share, respectively, of after-tax gains from the sale of portfolio securities and drilling equipment.

Segment operating income for U.S. land operations was $192,930,000 for this year's second fiscal quarter, compared with $143,740,000 for last year's second fiscal quarter and $194,048,000 for this year's first fiscal quarter. Average revenue per day rose by $4,318 from $27,066 during this year's first fiscal quarter to $31,384 during the second fiscal quarter, and average rig margin per day rose by $4,534 from $14,820 during this year's first fiscal quarter to $19,354 during the second fiscal quarter.

Approximately $6,500 per day of the average rig revenue and margin per day was primarily a result of early contract termination revenue earned during this year's second fiscal quarter, as compared to approximately $1,100 per day for the same type of revenue during this year's first fiscal quarter. Excluding the impact of the accelerated income corresponding to early terminations during this year's first two quarters, average revenue per day declined sequentially by $1,060 to $24,876 for the second fiscal quarter, and average rig margin per day declined sequentially by $808 to $12,898 for the second fiscal quarter. Rig utilization in the segment was 72% for this year's second fiscal quarter, compared with 94% for last year's second fiscal quarter and 95% for this year's first fiscal quarter. The Company's U.S. land segment had 120 rigs contracted and 83 rigs idle and available by the end of the second fiscal quarter, and approximately 104 rigs contracted and 101 rigs idle and available as of April 30, 2009.

Since the beginning of fiscal 2009, the Company has received early termination notices relating to a cumulative total of 35 active new build FlexRigs®* with long-term contracts in the Company's U.S. land segment. Of these 35 FlexRigs, 28 were idle by the end of the second fiscal quarter, and the remaining seven are expected to be released during the third fiscal quarter. All 35 early terminated new builds had been deployed to the field before fiscal 2008. Income from revenue related to early termination fees and penalties in the U.S. land segment totaled slightly over $81 million in the second fiscal quarter, including approximately $20 million which would have been earned during the quarter regardless of early terminations. Additional revenues of approximately $75 million corresponding to new build early terminations are expected to be recognized after the second fiscal quarter. At this point, we expect about 40% of this amount to favorably impact the Company's third fiscal quarter revenues, approximately 20% during the fourth fiscal quarter, and the rest during fiscal 2010.

The Company completed the construction of 11 FlexRigs under long-term contracts during the second fiscal quarter and two were completed in April 2009. The Company has agreed to delay deliveries of some of its new builds and will be compensated by the corresponding customers accordingly. As a result, the construction schedule for the 16 remaining new builds has been modified to complete approximately two FlexRigs per month through October 2009 and one FlexRig per month thereafter. Given the Company's corresponding commitments with its suppliers, this schedule modification is not expected to have a significant impact on the Company's previously announced capital expenditure estimate of $850 million for fiscal 2009. In the U.S. land segment, approximately 42% of the Company's potential revenue days for the remainder of fiscal 2009 remain committed to work for customers under term contracts, and approximately 37% remain committed during fiscal 2010.

President and C.E.O. Hans Helmerich commented, "It is clear now that the energy industry is suffering the worst cyclical downturn since 1981. The rig count has fallen by more than half in response to dramatic customer spending reductions. The Company entered the downturn with the highest percentage of contractual protection in our history. We are well positioned to navigate the challenging market environment that has caught most of us by surprise. Conditions may continue to worsen until more visibility emerges regarding commodity price fundamentals. Customers will return to the drill bit once improving prices encourage them to do so. At that time, our brand leadership, asset quality and organizational strength will continue to offer customers distinctive performance and service."

Segment operating income for the Company's offshore operations was $15,837,000 for this year's second fiscal quarter, compared with $3,603,000 for last year's second fiscal quarter and $14,710,000 for this year's first fiscal quarter. Rig utilization in the offshore segment increased to 98% during this year's second fiscal quarter, compared with 65% during last year's second fiscal quarter and 89% during this year's first fiscal quarter. Average rig margins per day remained strong during this year's second fiscal quarter at $22,330.

The Company's international land operating segment recorded a loss of $15,282,000 for this year's second fiscal quarter, compared with operating income of $12,752,000 for last year's second fiscal quarter, and $22,628,000 for this year's first fiscal quarter. The operating loss was the result of not recording revenue from the Company's operations in Venezuela as discussed in the following paragraph. As a result, the international land segment revenue was decreased by $35.6 million in the second fiscal quarter of 2009 or approximately $16,760 per revenue day. Average rig utilization for the second fiscal quarter was 81%, compared with 73% for last year's second fiscal quarter, and 98% during this year's first fiscal quarter.

The Company has determined that, as of the beginning of the second fiscal quarter of 2009, collectability of revenue is not reasonably assured in Venezuela, primarily due to the uncertainty in the timing of collectability. As a result, revenue will be recorded as cash is collected. The Company continues efforts to collect accounts receivable and unrecorded revenue. Since the Company's last quarterly earnings release on January 29, 2009, the Company has collected approximately $8 million (U.S. currency equivalent) from PDVSA. As of today, the total invoiced amount by the Company that remains pending payment from PDVSA is approximately $116 million (U.S. currency equivalent, including $66 million in accounts receivable, an estimated $43 million in unrecorded revenue and about $7 million in other non-revenue billings). Seven H&P rigs that formerly worked for PDVSA and that have completed their contract obligations are currently either stacked or in the process of rigging down. The remaining four rigs continue to work for PDVSA, all of which are now expected to complete their contract obligations within the next four months.


 


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