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Regal Falls to Record on Greer Exit, Ukraine Gas Flow Failure

Bloomberg

By Eduard Gismatullin – Sep 30, 2010

Regal Petroleum Plc, the U.K. explorer focusing on natural-gas projects in Ukraine, fell to the lowest share price on record after Chief Executive Officer David Greer quit and as gas wells failed to stabilize output.

Regal dropped as much as 31 percent to 18.25 pence in London trading, the lowest price since Sept. 27, 2002. The stock was at 21 pence at 10:03 a.m. local time, valuing the company at 66.86 million pounds ($106 million). The shares have fallen about 80 percent in the last year.

Keith Henry, Regal’s chairman, will assume Greer’s responsibilities until further notice, the London-based company said today in a statement.

Some Ukrainian wells have failed to stabilize gas production, Regal said in a separate statement. Its perforation works and tests of the T- and D-sands in the Mex-106 well didn’t “show any evidence of inflow,” it said.

In April, Regal decided to shift its focus away from deep- level exploration of Tournasian- and Devonian-age layers, or T and D-sands, toward production from Visean aged, or B-sand, shallower deposits. It has been working to boost production from its Mekhediviska-Golotvshinska and Svyrydivske fields in Ukraine after missing an output target of 3,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day last year.

Output rose to an average 2,377 barrels of oil a day in June, up from 1,452 barrels a day in December, Regal said.

Greer, a former Royal Dutch Shell Plc executive, joined Regal on Nov. 22, 2007, a day after the Anglo-Dutch company bid $410 million for Regal’s two Ukrainian gas fields. On Nov. 23, Shell called off its approach.

Greer worked on Shell’s Sakhalin-2 oil and gas exploration project in Russia. He quit as project director in June 2007 after sending a motivational memo to staff in April urging them to advance pipeline construction and saying he despised cowards, according to Shell. The company denied the two events were linked.

OAO Gazprom, Russia’s state-owned natural gas monopoly, took control of Sakhalin-2 on April 18, 2007, to accelerate its development after criticism by the Russian government over environmental damage and construction delays.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eduard Gismatullin in London at [email protected]

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at [email protected]

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