Woodside Releases Full-year 2023 Results

Source: 2/27/2024, Location: Not categorized

Woodside has achieved record production of 187.2 MMboe (513 Mboe/d) and excellent operated LNG reliability of 98%. We recorded full-year net profit after tax (NPAT) of $1,660 million, and underlying NPAT of $3,320 million when adjusted for exceptional items, and operating cash flow was $6,145 million.(1)

The Directors have determined a final dividend of US 60 cents per share (cps), bringing the full-year dividend to US 140 cps. The dividend is fully franked. The value of the total full-year dividend is $2,658 million.

Woodside CEO Meg O’Neill said she was tremendously proud that at a time of inflationary pressures, Woodside continued to return strong dividends to shareholders while delivering on our strategy to thrive through the energy transition.

'Woodside is supplying energy the world needs from a high-quality portfolio which is geographically advantaged to meet growing demand for LNG.

'Our focus on disciplined capital management has allowed us to deliver consistently strong returns to shareholders. Underlying profit was strong, enabling us to maintain an 80% dividend payout ratio.

'While realised prices were down year-on-year to levels closer to historic norms, annual sales volume topped 200 million barrels of oil equivalent (over 548 Mboe/d), generating revenue of almost $14 billion. Free cash flow of $560 million was a significant achievement in a period of major capital expenditure and normalised prices.

'We are contributing to Australia. Our tax contribution in Australia was a record A$5 billion in 2023 and we are committed to maintaining the delivery of affordable, reliable gas to Australian customers. For over almost 40 years of operations in WA, Woodside has supplied domestic gas volumes equivalent to more than one third of our exported liquefied natural gas (LNG) volumes.

'Climate is integral to our company strategy and we are on track to meet our net equity Scope 1 and 2 emissions reduction targets. Across our business in 2023 Woodside achieved a reduction in net equity Scope 1 and 2 emissions of 12.5% below the starting base, against our target of 15% by 2025.(2)

'The 2023 result was built on record annual production of 187.2 million barrels of oil equivalent (513 Mboe/d) in the first full year following the completion of the merger with BHP’s petroleum business. The production outcome was underpinned by another outstanding year at our operated LNG assets, which achieved 98% reliability over the year. Despite the inflationary environment, unit production cost was steady at $8.3/boe.

'Our debt-free merger with BHP Petroleum added cash generating assets and strengthened Woodside’s balance sheet, giving us capacity for future capital investments as well as ongoing returns. Gearing at year-end was 12.1% and our total available liquidity was $7.8 billion, helping maintain our investment-grade credit ratings.

'We achieved our value objectives for the sale of 10% equity in the Scarborough Joint Venture to LNG Japan.(3) This was followed in 2024 by the sale of 15.1% equity to JERA.(4) These transactions demonstrate the ongoing demand for new gas supplies to support regional energy security.

'Across the industry, contracts for LNG continue to be signed with long durations, signalling confidence in the future strength of the market from both buyers and sellers. Woodside is geographically advantaged to meet the forecast growing demand for LNG in Asia.

'Significant progress was made on Woodside’s major growth projects over the course of the year. The floating production storage and offloading facility arrived at the Sangomar oil field off Senegal in February and with 17 wells now drilled and completed at the project, we are on track for first production in mid-2024.

'The Scarborough Energy Project received four key environmental approvals in December 2023 and was 55% complete at the end of the year. We welcome the Australian Government’s plans to reform the system for offshore approvals and are participating in the current consultation process.

'Since the start of 2024, we’ve completed the initial drydock of the hull for the Scarborough floating production unit and the first modules for Pluto Train 2 have arrived and been installed on site in Western Australia.

'In 2023, we took a final investment decision (FID) on Trion, which is a large, high-quality resource and will be Mexico’s first deepwater oil development. Expected returns from the development exceed Woodside’s capital allocation framework targets and the asset will be a strong contributor to Woodside’s future cashflows.

'Woodside’s safety performance in 2023 was again below the standard we set for ourselves, with the tragic loss of a colleague at the North Rankin Complex. We have taken action to prevent a repeat of such events, commissioning an external review of our safety systems. It is imperative that we do better in 2024.

'In our Climate Transition Action Plan released today, Woodside announced a new target to take FID on new energy products and lower carbon services with total greenhouse gas emissions abatement capacity of 5 million tonnes per annum by 2030. This will complement our existing target to invest $5 billion in such products and services in the same timeframe with a focus on the abatement impact of these products.

'We continued to be disciplined and value-focused in pursuing new energy opportunities. We progressed H2OK to technical readiness for FID and are evaluating the proposed US Federal tax incentive criteria. We also commenced concept select for Angel carbon capture and storage, which has the potential to address Woodside Scope 1 emissions and customer emissions.

'In 2024, we are looking forward to celebrating 40 years of safe, reliable domestic gas supply to Western Australia and 35 years of LNG supply to customers overseas.

'We are focused on delivering first oil from Sangomar and progressing the Scarborough Energy Project and Trion development.'

Compared with 2022, 2023 full-year financial statements primarily reflected lower prices across all commodities, partly offset by higher sales volumes.

Reported results include non-cash post-tax asset impairments amounting to $1,533 million ($1,917 million pre-tax), reflecting approximately $1,178 million ($1,383 million pre-tax) impairment for the Shenzi asset. This is primarily related to goodwill and a portion of the purchase price assigned to Shenzi on completion of the merger with BHP Petroleum. The goodwill and purchase price allocation resulted from application of acquisition accounting principles and reflect both higher hydrocarbon prices and Woodside’s share price at the merger completion date. Goodwill is not amortised and, once impaired, is not subject to a future impairment reversal. For reference, Shenzi represented approximately 5% of 2023 production and approximately 2% of 2023 year-end proved plus probable reserves.

Key business activities

Strategic achievements

- Delivered record production in the first full-year period following the merger with BHP petroleum

- Signed multiple agreements to sell an equity interest in the Scarborough Joint Venture to LNG Japan and, subsequent to the period, JERA, and established a broader strategic relationship which includes potential LNG offtake and collaboration on opportunities in new energy and carbon management (6)

- Approved a final investment decision (FID) on the Trion project, which is expected to generate strong returns and commence production in 2028

- Signed a sales and purchase agreement (SPA) with Mexico Pacific, strategically expanding our trading portfolio (7)

Operations and projects

- Delivered annual production of 187.2 MMboe (513 Mboe/d)

- Maintained strong operated LNG reliability of 98%

- Reduced net equity Scope 1 and 2 emissions 12.5% below starting base8

- Achieved first oil at Mad Dog Phase 2 Argos facility, in the US Gulf of Mexico

- Continued to unlock additional phases of existing projects including FIDs at Mad Dog Southwest, Julimar Brunello Phase 3 and Lambert West9

- Progressed future growth projects at Sangomar and Scarborough

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