Independent oil and gas company,
SM Energy Company
) has recently announced the pricing of senior unsecured notes
aggregating $500 million. These notes with a coupon rate of 5%
are to be issued at par and would be due in 2024.
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Proceeds generated from the issue would be utilized to repay
outstanding borrowings under its credit facility and for general
corporate purposes. SM Energy expects to close the offering by
May 20, 2013.
In its recently reported first quarter, SM Energy posted $282.3
million of net cash from operating activities versus $188.1
million in the year-ago quarter. As of Mar 31, 2013, SM Energy
had a cash balance of $0.087 million and long-term debt of
$1,530.0 million, with a debt-to-capitalization ratio of 51.6%.
SM Energy also experienced a solid 2012 with new highs for proved
reserves and annual production. It also finished the year with
record quarterly production. These were mainly driven by its high
rate of return for oil and liquid-rich ventures in the Eagle Ford
shale and Bakken/Three Forks, which will likely continue to aid
growth in 2013.
The company has changed its strategy of growing through niche
acquisitions by focusing on greater acreage in potential resource
plays. Its exposure to several emerging plays, including the
Eagle Ford, Bakken, Haynesville, Marcellus, Granite Wash and
Woodford shales, will likely be the primary growth driver moving
forward. Particularly, the acreage in Eagle Ford gives SM Energy
considerable growth potential. The company's move to increase
liquids composition in its portfolio is also noteworthy.
Going forward, we expect the company's attractive oil and gas
investments, balanced and diverse portfolio of proved reserves
and development drilling opportunities to create long-term value
We view SM Energy as one of the most attractive players in the
exploration and production space. The company reported increased
proved reserves in the first quarter, while driving down finding
and development costs.
SM Energy Company is an independent energy company engaged in the
acquisition, exploration, development, and production of crude
oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids in onshore North
SM Energy currently retains a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
However, there are other Zacks Ranked #1 (Strong Buy) stocks in
the oil and gas industry like
Pembina Pipeline Corporation
) that also appear attractive in the short term.