Digital delivering "incremental value" to bp

By Dominic Ellis
Replacement cost profit totalled $86m (£66m) from July to September...

Digital continues to deliver "incremental value" to bp as it recorded a replacement cost profit (net income) of $86m (£66m) from July to September.

In Q3, it completed full alignment of its exploration and production financial systems onto one common template, providing lower back-office costs and leading to more improved operational and cost-efficiencies in the field. Robotic crawler technologies are also being rolled out to cut third party inspection and maintenance costs.

Speaking in a webinar today, Chief Executive Officer Bernard Looney added its 2020 capex will be $12bn (£9.07bn), down 25 percent on plans laid out at the start of the year, as it continues to drive "effiiency to our cost base" - which is further reflected in 2,800 job cuts and halving of senior executive positions to 120. It is committed to wholescale transformation, aiming to be net zero by 2050.


Figures released to the market today:

  • Reported loss for the quarter was $0.5 billion (£0.38 billion), compared with losses of $16.8 billion for the previous quarter of 2020, reflecting absence of significant exploration write-offs and impairment charges, and $0.7 billion for the third quarter of 2019
  • Operating cash flow for the quarter, excluding Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments, was resilient at $5.3 billion, including $0.9 billion working capital release (after adjusting for net inventory holding gains). Gulf of Mexico oil spill payments in the quarter were $0.1 billion post-tax
  • Organic capital expenditure in the first three quarters of 2020 was $9.1 billion, in line with the full-year target of around $12 billion
  • BP continues to make progress towards its target of $2.5 billion in annual cash cost savings by end-2021 compared with 2019, with its new organization on schedule to be in place by start of 2021.
  • Proceeds from divestments and other disposals in the quarter were $0.6 billion. BP has already completed or agreed transactions for approaching half its target of $25 billion in proceeds by 2025, including the agreed $5 billion sale of BP’s petrochemicals business, expected to complete by year end.
  • Net debt at quarter-end was $40.4 billion, down $0.5 billion. This includes the impact of the $1.1 billion payment for the completion of the joint venture with Reliance. Net debt is expected to fall in the fourth quarter as proceeds from divestments are received.
  • A dividend of 5.25 cents per share was announced for the quarter.

Performing while transforming

  • BP has brought two new Upstream major projects into production since mid-year: Atlantis Phase 3 in the US Gulf of Mexico and, ahead of schedule, Khazzan Phase 2 (Ghazeer) in Oman.
  • Operations continued to be good with refining availability of 96.2 percent and Upstream plant reliability of 93 percent. Upstream unit production costs for the nine months of 2020 were 10% lower than 2019, reflecting progress on cost efficiency and strategic divestments.
  • While refining margins remained at historical lows, driven by the extremely weak environment, BP‘s marketing businesses recovered strongly in the quarter, with fuels marketing earnings growing 3% year on year and lubricants result broadly in line with a year earlier.
  • BP agreed to enter the offshore wind sector through a strategic partnership with Equinor to pursue offshore wind opportunities in the US, including taking a 50 percent stake in two leases off the US east coast.
  • The company announced plans for a network of ultra-fast chargers in Germany and BP Chargemaster won a contract to deliver over 1,000 charging points for Police Scotland.
  • It has announced a partnership with Microsoft under which the two companies will co-operate to progress their sustainability aims. BP has agreed to supply Microsoft with renewable energy and to extend its use of Microsoft’s cloud-based services.


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