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16 Pages

BHP Billiton oil and gas exploration summary

BHP Billiton oil and gas exploration summary

Report summary

BHP has two heartland conventional exploration regions – the North West Shelf of Australia and the deepwater GoM.  An  acquisition-led entry into the US unconventional space firmly established a third region, and included one of the best portfolios in the liquids-rich Eagle Ford play.

Recent organic growth initiatives in Australia and GoM have been unsuccessful and the company has struggled to renew its development pipeline.  With only modest volumes found from substantial investment, the company eroded significant value through exploration from 2005-2014. This in part reflects a shift in strategy after 2006, with greater emphasis on legacy appraisal and developing existing discoveries, and a reduced number of exploration wells.

The company is now moving into a new testing phase, with plans to drill high-impact prospects in the deepwater GoM, Trinidad and the under-explored Beagle Sub-basin of Australia’s North Carnarvon Basin.

What's included?

This report includes 2 file(s)

  • BHP Billiton oil and gas exploration summary PDF - 642.65 KB 16 Pages, 6 Tables, 20 Figures
  • BHP Billiton.xls XLS - 548.50 KB


Affected by supply and demand, the economy of individual countries and technological breakthroughs, oil and gas exploration is an industry in constant motion. The high costs of finding and developing new oil and gas fields that can be commercially developed has created a challenging atmosphere, with explorers increasingly seeing low returns, low value and slow progress.

This Exploration Summary report quantifies the company's exploration volume and value performance over the past 10 years, and reviews its outlook for future success.

Businesses can use this report to get a detailed analysis of this company, what exploration areas they're involved in, what wells to watch and how well placed they are. It will help you understand company performance and shows how the best explorers have achieved their success.

Wood Mackenzie benchmarks exploration results for over 40 companies. Our analysts provide accurate information on the cost of exploration compared to the value of discoveries so that you can develop profitable strategies. We are the established global industry standard for oil and gas exploration performance.

  • Executive summary
  • Strategy
    • Upstream strategy and exploration outlook
    • Evolution of exploration strategy
  • Investment and costs
  • Exploration
    • Well data
  • Reserves and resources
    • Scope of this report
  • Production
  • Valuation
    • Exploration under-performance relative to peers
    • Modest success in the two heartlands
    • Heartlands success has not been replicated elsewhere
    • Late entry into unconventionals proves costly

In this report there are 26 tables or charts, including:

  • Executive summary
    • Basins drilled and major discoveries 2005-2014
    • Ten year performance summary
  • Strategy
    • Strategy: Table 1
    • Net active exploration acreage by water depth
    • Net active exploration acreage by country
  • Investment and costs
    • Exploration & appraisal spend and reinvestment
    • Exploration & appraisal spend by water depth
    • Exploration & appraisal spend by basin maturity
    • Discovery costs by water depth
  • Exploration
    • Gross exploration & appraisal wells by basin and sector
    • Exploration: Image 1
    • Exploration: Image 2
  • Reserves and resources
    • Discoveries (2005 to 2014)
    • Key organic unconventional plays
    • Volumes discovered by year
    • Volumes discovered by water depth
    • Volumes discovered by country
    • Volumes discovered by basin
  • Production
    • Production from new field discoveries and organic unconventionals
  • Valuation
    • Full-cycle economics
    • Valuation: Image 1
    • Valuation: Image 2
    • Valuation: Image 3
    • Valuation: Image 4
    • Costs and development value by reserve category
    • Value creation by water depth
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