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    Ascent cuts costs amid legal headaches


Ascent's development plans are up in the air amid permitting delays.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Natural Gas & LNG News, Europe, Corporate, Corporate governance, Exploration & Production, Financials, News By Country, Slovenia

Ascent cuts costs amid legal headaches

Slovenia-focused Ascent Resources is slashing costs order to keep itself afloat amid permitting delays at its Petisovci gas project. 

“The new management and board have taken over day to day operations of the company and finalising cost reduction measures to reduce net monthly cash outflow by over 50%,” the London-listed company reported on August 27.

Ascent’s former CEO Colin Hutchinson resigned last month and was replaced by John Buggenhagen. Louis Castro also took the role of non-executive chairman from Cameron Davies, who retired. The shake-up came several months after Ascent reported another year of losses for 2018, as rising revenues were overshadowed by sales costs, impairments and administration expenses.

Ascent said it was continuing to explore options for developing the Petisovci gas field without the use of hydraulic fracturing, after being ordered by Slovenian authorities to get a separate permit for the technique in June. It is preparing a lawsuit to challenge this decision.

The company added it was compiling documents to extend its concession for Petisovci beyond 2022, and aimed to finish processing survey data acquired in 2008 and 2009 by mid-September.

Petisovci is estimated to hold 12.9bn m³ of gas in verified P50 contingent resources. Ascent has a 75% stake in the exploration project, while Geoenergo has 25%.