Weatherford expects Schlumberger joint venture to boost recovery

By Patrick C. Miller | May 02, 2017

Weatherford International reported a net loss of $448 million during the first quarter of 2017, but expects a joint venture with Schlumberger OneStim to improve its balance sheet.

Mark McCollum, Weatherford president and CEO, said the agreement with Schlumberger offers a significant North America land-based multistage completions portfolio combined with one of the largest hydraulic fracturing fleets in the industry for the development of unconventional resource plays in land markets in the United States and Canada.

“This agreement enables us to take another step toward improving our balance sheet and strengthening our returns,” he said. “It also confirms our commitment to creating strategic partnerships, sharing resources and capabilities to develop new technologies and achieve critical mass as a means to provide our clients with the lowest cost per barrel."

For the year’s first quarter, Weatherford reported a loss of 45 cents per share and a non-GAAP net loss of $318 million before charges and credits on revenues of $1.39 billion. Net cash used in operating activities was $179 million.

Weatherford closed six manufacturing facilities during the quarter. McCollum said that through more disciplined cost management, the company will continue to streamline its operations to become a leaner and more efficient.

“This includes the completion of the OneStim joint venture and the divestiture of our land drilling rigs business,” he said. “Delivering heightened service quality and reliability will position our company on a solid path toward long-term profitability.”

Weatherford’s capital expenditures of $40 million decreased by $28 million (41 percent) sequentially and decreased $3 million (7 percent) from the same quarter in 2016. In January, the company purchased $240 million in leased equipment for use in its North America pressure pumping business as part of the OneStim joint venture.

For its North American operations, Weatherford reported that in the Eagle Ford, its hostile-environment-logging (HEL) system enabled failure-free drilling of 57 wells, saving more than $1 million. Weatherford also won a contract for more than 40 pumping units for an operator in western Canada. Deployment is underway with 20 units delivered in the first quarter.

“As we emerge from the worst downturn in oilfield history, there has never been a more important time for collaboration across our organization as well as with our clients, reinforcing our commitment to being a trusted business partner to those we serve,” McCollum said.