During the past week, I have heard the same thing from three sources, that Petrohawk has laid off hundreds of landmen. The figure I hear is between 250 - 400 landmen laid off. This is massive. Is this a Petrohawk problem or is this another downturn in natural gas and its price? Is it a maturing of the work in the Haynesville Shale in particular...

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Comment by Johnny on March 23, 2010 at 23:27
Nice dog! I keep getting feedback that most of the recent downturn has struck Petrohawk harder than others, but a 30 percent drop in natural gas prices for companies struggling in the last month is taking its toll.
Comment by BJ on March 23, 2010 at 22:46
Does not bode well for Petrohawk expansion into Nacogdoches they may not like what they have thus far?
Comment by Phillip Briggs on March 23, 2010 at 21:39
I work in the Shelby County Clerks office about four days a week. Last month, it was so crowded, even 'standing room' was hard to find. Last two weeks, I'd say it's running at half capacity... half the desks and counter space are available. I had been wondering why everything shut down so quickly. Maybe Petrohawk and some other crews have been moved elsewhere. Or it could be all of the real estate records have been placed online, full viewing of entire documents. I can get all the information I need to work, at home, but I'm required to double check all the online work with the physical books.
Comment by jbam on March 10, 2010 at 21:54
I'm not familiar enough with that part of the business to know, although I think Les B has it right. I don't know 250-400 landmen would do if HK is essentially done. What I've heard Stoneburner say is that they're looking at infill where it makes sense. My guess is that if the right chunk showed up, they might go after it if the price is right but I don't think it's likely they're looking for a substantial addition. They've got decades worth of drilling already.

I think it's probably true that Petrohawk has about what it wants to chew in Haynesville and it's got a real job ahead of it to cover those three year lease terms. It's on track to do that by mid 2011 or a bit later and expects positive cash flow for the second half of 2011.

They're drilling for acreage now, not what they would drill if they didn't have to cover the sections. That would allow them to more fully exploit the Eagle Ford which may be as big a payout for them as Haynesville. That's a case of where they're pulled back and focus drilling on the Eagle Ford future to build asset value - and they almost certainly means more acreage there.

What Petrohawk has done is to take a quantum leap from middling small E&P to some consequential in size for an indy. If they're looking at another big buy, it's more likely to a surprise like Eagle Ford was. I don't think they're close to being done in Eagle Ford.
Comment by Les B on March 9, 2010 at 8:59
Johnny - neither. All major operators have built significant acreage inventories in the Haynesville/Bossier Shale and other unconventional natural gas plays and have slowed down the pace in leasing additional acreage.

Selling properties is a common occurrence in the O&G industry even by the majors. Companies continue to high grade their property inventory - both producing and undeveloped.
Comment by Henry on March 9, 2010 at 8:41
I think HK has bitten off what it can chew, and is pausing. By my count, they have about 150 approved units which have yet to be permitted for drilling. With 15 rigs in Louisiana, those 150 sites will keep them busy for almost 2 years.
Comment by Parkdota on March 8, 2010 at 18:13
One of Petrohawk's main sources of financing is one of the major banks that got in big trouble. That along with supressed prices is causing issues. They're having to sell off assetts and restructer to survive. It's tough to do business when you can't get the financing you need and you can't make the funds to self finance your own projects.
Comment by Carter on March 8, 2010 at 11:25
Has to do with them pulling out as they have as much as they want leased in play. I believe there is some other discussion of this on the site. Also they talked of this on their recent conference call.
Comment by adubu on March 6, 2010 at 21:46
maybe all the good acreage leased???????

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