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Schlumberger releases 1Q19 results

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Oilfield Technology,

Schlumberger yesterday reported results for 1Q19.


  • Worldwide revenue of US$7.9 billion decreased 4% sequentially, but increased 1% y/y.
  • International revenue of US$5.0 billion decreased 5% sequentially, but increased 3% y/y.
  • North America revenue of US$2.7 billion decreased 3% sequentially and 3% y/y.
  • Pretax operating income of US$908 million decreased 6% sequentially and 7% y/y.
  • EPS was US$0.30.
  • Cash flow from operations was US$326 million.
  • Quarterly cash dividend of US$0.50 per share was approved.

Schlumberger Chairman and CEO, Paal Kibsgaard, commented: “First-quarter revenue of US$7.9 billion declined 4% sequentially, reflecting the expected reduction in North America land activity and seasonally lower international activity in the Northern Hemisphere. In addition, reduced software, product, and multiclient seismic license sales following the fourth-quarter increase and lower Cameron long-cycle project deliveries contributed to the sequential decline. Improved sequential activity in Latin America marginally offset these declines.

“Looking beyond the headline numbers for the quarter, our international business results were strong, with Reservoir Characterization, Drilling, and Production combining to deliver year-on-year revenue growth of 8%, tracking our expectation of high single-digit growth in the international markets in 2019.

“In North America, first-quarter revenue was 3% lower sequentially as expected, driven by softer pricing and lower activity for both our hydraulic fracturing- and drilling-related businesses, while revenue from our artificial lift product line was flat sequentially. Offshore revenue in North America was slightly down sequentially with increased wireline activity in the US Gulf of Mexico offset by lower multiclient seismic license sales. Cameron revenue in North America was marginally up sequentially.

“By business segment, first-quarter revenue for Reservoir Characterization fell 7% sequentially due to seasonally lower sales of software and multiclient seismic licenses. Drilling revenue declined 3% sequentially due to reduced winter activity in the Northern Hemisphere, but increased 12% year-on-year on strong growth from Integrated Drilling Services (IDS) projects in several GeoMarkets. Production revenue was 2% lower sequentially, driven by decreased OneStim® revenue in North America and reduced artificial lift sales in the international markets. Cameron revenue declined 7% sequentially, mostly due to lower project deliveries from the long-cycle businesses of OneSubsea® and Drilling Systems following strong year-end sales of the previous quarter.

“From a macro perspective, we expect the oil market sentiments to steadily improve over the course of 2019, supported by a solid demand outlook combined with the OPEC and Russia production cuts taking full effect, slowing shale oil production growth in North America, and a further weakening of the international production base as the impact of four years of underinvestment becomes increasingly evident.

“We also continue to see clear signs that E&P investments are starting to normalise as the industry heads toward a more sustainable financial stewardship of the global resource base. Directionally, this means that higher investments in the international markets are required simply to keep production flat, while North America land is set for lower investments with a likely downward adjustment to the current production growth outlook.

“Our view of the international markets is consistent with recent third-party spending surveys, suggesting that E&P investments will increase by 7 to 8% in 2019, supported by a higher rig count and a rise in the number of customer project FIDs. In line with this, offshore development activity plans continue to strengthen, with subsea tree awards reaching their highest level since 2013 last year. We are also seeing the start of a return to exploration activity on renewed interest in reserves replacement. Notably, new discoveries in 2018 were at the lowest level since 2000.

“Conversely in North America land, the higher cost of capital, lower borrowing capacity, and investors looking for increased returns suggest that future E&P investment levels will likely be dictated by free cash flow. We therefore see E&P investments in North America land down 10% in 2019. In addition, rising technical challenges—from parent-child well interference, step-outs from core acreage, and limited growth in lateral length and proppant per stage—all point to more moderate growth in US shale oil production in the coming years.

“The normalisation of global E&P spending, with increased international market investments and a reduction in North America land CAPEX, represents a positive market shift for Schlumberger and the welcome return of a very familiar opportunity set, given our unmatched global strength. We have further extended our global leadership position with the efforts and investments we have made in recent years of modernising our execution platform, expanding our technology offering, driving digital and technology-system innovation, evolving our business models, and strengthening our global footprint. In addition, after enduring four years of major pricing concessions in support of our international customers, we see the recovery of international service and product pricing and improving our own financial returns as a major business priority—firmly supported by increasing activity levels, little to no spare equipment capacity, and prudent deployment of new capital. Furthermore, the foundation for our 2019 business plan is a clear commitment to generate sufficient cash flow to cover our business needs without increasing net debt.”

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