Profits at oil giant Shell last year more than doubled to $15.8 billion – an increase of 119% – from $7.2 billion in 2016, the company announced yesterday.
For the final quarter of last year, alone Shell’s earnings on a current cost of supplies basis (a standard oil industry financial benchmark – also more than doubled to $4.3 billion from less than $2 billion the year before.
Chief Executive Ben van Beurden said the group was “pretty close” to completing its $30 billion programme to sell off ‘peripheral’ oil assets.
He said: “Our relentless focus on value, performance and competitiveness meant we were able to deliver $39 billion of cash flow from operations, excluding working capital movements, from our upgraded portfolio.
“We strengthened our financial framework during the year through an $8 billion reduction in our net debt.
“So we enter 2018 with continued discipline and confidence, committed to the delivery of strong returns and cash.”
He also said that Shell aims to spend at least $1 billion – and possibly double that – every year in acquiring assets in retail energy supply markets and in charging points for battery-powered vehicles (BPVs).
Analysts also noted with interest what he didn’t say – ie anything about Shell in the North Sea.
2 Feb 2018