Hurricane Energy's CEO Robert Trice has resigned as Chief Executive Officer and a director of Hurricane by mutual agreement with the Board. Trice will remain available to assist the Company during a transition period of six months.
He will be replaced by Beverley Smith, who has has been appointed Interim Chief Executive Officer.
"Smith had a successful 30-year career with BG Group and has been a non-executive director of the Company since December 2019. She brings a wealth of production geology and field development leadership experience in the UK and internationally, which will be invaluable as the Company continues its transition from pure exploration towards a maturing production company," Hurricane Energy said.
Hurricane Energy, which operates the Lancaster oil field offshore the UK, last month hit an operational snag when it said when it was forced to shut one of its two producing wells and revise the output guidance for the year.
In an update on Monday, Hurricane Energy said that the well 205/21a-6 has been producing on its own since 17 May 2020 at a steady rate of c.10,300 bopd with a stable water cut of approximately 8%.
"In line with the Company's previously announced testing program for the 205/21a-6 well, on 5 June 2020, the choke size was increased, resulting in a production increase to c.12,000 bopd. The well will continue to be monitored, with further incremental increases in production possible depending on observed performance, in order to determine its optimal sustainable rate," Hurricane added.
"Given the challenges experienced in sustaining the target plateau production rate of 18,000 bopd net from the existing two well configuration on natural flow, the Technical Committee will conduct a review of all available information, including recent dynamic performance data, and will re-examine the full range of possible geological and reservoir models. Any revised interpretations will be factored into an updated Competent Person's Report, which the Company currently anticipates will be released no later than the end of Q1 2021," it said.
"Given the difficult macroeconomic backdrop and the need to strengthen the Company's balance sheet, the Board is keenly focused on the need to increase production, whilst also keeping capital expenditure focused and to a minimum. Principal among the near-term tasks of the Interim Chief Executive Officer will be to propose a revised forward activity program in support of those objectives. The forward activity program will be based on a prudent interpretation of field performance to date, including, for conservatism, the possibility of a shallower oil water contact. The Company will provide an update on the forward activity program, including scope, objectives, costs, and timing, once it is adopted by the Board," Hurricane Energy said.
Steven McTiernan, Chairman of Hurricane, said: "The Board commends Dr. Trice's pioneering efforts to explore the viability of the unique basement oil play west of the Shetlands. His dedication over a period of 16 years has built Hurricane into a recognized UK operator today, culminating in the outstanding success of delivering first oil in May 2019.
"As we move into a phase where the focus is on enhancing productivity, I am very pleased that Beverley has taken on the role of Interim CEO where her extensive subsurface and development experience will be of huge benefit to the Company.
"In evaluating options for the forward work program against an uncertain macroeconomic backdrop, we will prioritize early low-cost production with the capital discipline needed to achieve financial resilience."
Hurricane started up its Lancaster field west of Scotland's Shetland Islands in May 2019, via the Aoka Mizu FPSO.