Petroceltic reports first-half pre-tax loss of €2.6m

Petroceltic has reported a pre-tax loss of $3.25 million (€2.6m) for the first half of 2012; shaving almost $1m off losses generated in the corresponding period last year.

The Dublin-headquartered oil and gas exploration company had posted a pre-tax loss of just over $4.1m for the first six months of 2011.

Yesterday’s up-to-date interim figures show revenues of $291,000; up from $158,000 a year earlier. The first half loss per share figure has also significantly decreased, from 20c to 14c.

These results come hot on the heels of some upbeat summer newsflow from the company; with its chief asset — the Ain Tsila field in Algeria — deemed commercial and the announcement of its £165m (€210m) reverse takeover of Edinburgh-headquartered company, Melrose Resources.

Speaking yesterday, Brian O’Cathain — Petroceltic’s chief executive — said it is a “transformational time” for the Irish company; with the Melrose deal set to create a regional leader “with a diversified portfolio of producing, development and high impact exploration assets” and an enlarged well-funded group capable of sustained long-term growth.

“During the first half of 2012, Petroceltic has achieved some significant operational and commercial milestones in both Algeria and Italy and has made good progress with seismic acquisition in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. Our next important task will be the commencement of the development planning phase of Ain Tsila, in conjunction with our partners Sonatrach and Enel,” he added.

He also noted the company is fully funded and well-placed to continue to develop and grow the business. As of the end of June, Petroceltic had a cash position of $51.1m, with no debt.

“The focus of the company, over the coming months, is to complete the merger with Melrose, progress development of the Ain Tsila field in Algeria and advance our offshore and onshore operations in Italy, as well as move towards drilling our first exploration well in Kurdistan in 2013,” Mr O’Cathain said.

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