Analyst Wrap excerpt Re woodside and Hardmans

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    Headline Stories - Friday, September 27, 2002

    Anthony Sarich
    27 September 2002
    This story is exclusive to ERN as of 26/9/2002 6:02:00 PM EST.

    No matter how hard you try, you just cannot please everybody. Woodside and its partners found this out the hard way during the week. Despite hitting a 133m hydrocarbon column off the coast of Mauritania, all three Australian-listed companies participating in the well -Woodside, Roc Oil and Hardman Resources - saw their share prices drop, or remain stagnant.

    Some in the market reckon it was because investors were expecting a bigger oil discovery. Instead they got 110m gas column and "only" 23m of oil, which translates roughly into 50 to 100 million barrels, which is not a bad find in anybody's language.

    In a great impersonation of Paul Keating when he was Treasurer of this great country, Hardman Resources boss Ted Ellyard lashed out at the market by saying it "does not understand it (the business), as it usually doesn't." And keep your eyes peeled for a Hardman placement in the near future.

    Hardman's partner in Mauritania, Woodside, has also had a busy week. Apart from drilling in Africa, winning environmental awards and sub-leasing office place, the oil and gas giant wants to expand abroad without ruffling the feathers of its majority stakeholder Shell too much that is.

    Woodside is said to be looking at number of targets including the assets of Westport Resources, who are busy in the Rocky Mountains, Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf Coast. The Perth-based company is also said to be looking at the assets of a European outfit, Preussag Energie, which are located in more riskier areas such as South America, the Mediterranean, Middle East and Asia

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