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Ben van Beurden admits earnings figures do not “look good” for investors

Royal Dutch Shell Plc has today announced its disappointing fourth-quarter figures. The Company turned in one of its worst performances in more than a decade.”

The Telegraph says that the company has dashed investor hopes for a resurgence in profits. It reports that “for the year as a whole Shell deepened its losses in its exploration and production business from $2.2bn to $2.7bn”.

CNBC says that Ben van Beurden, CEO of Royal Dutch Shell Plc has conceded that the earnings figures do not “look good” for investors. Their article headline says: Shell posts earnings of $3.5 billion in 2016; an 8% slide from $3.8 billion in 2015

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Royal Dutch Shell Breaking News 31 Jan 2017

Links below are to some of the current news stories posted on our sister website royaldutchshellgroup.com covering, among other developments, an article published today by The Wall Street Journal under the headline: Corruption Currents: Nigeria to Charge Shell, Eni in Oil-Graft Scandal.

There is also news that Shell has sold a stake in a Thailand gas field and is selling more North Sea assets, all part of the fire sale necessary for funding the takeover of the BG Group. Also, some previews of Shell’s imminent fourth quarter results.

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Royal Dutch Shell PLC saddled with a mountain of debt


By John Donovan

The Wall Street Journal does not mince its words.

In an article published today, it says that Shell has saddled itself with a mountain of debt as a result of its takeover of the BG Group.

Article author Sarah Kent points out Shell’s  debt-to-equity ratio is far higher than its major rivals.

The same concern is expressed in a related Wall Street Journal article: Shell’s New Year Promise: Slimming Down

Although Shell promised to offload $30 billion of assets, it has thus far sold only $5 billion worth.

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BP buys, while Shell sells: a recap of recent deal making by the majors

Written by Mark Lammey – 20/12/2016 6:00 am

While Shell has been selling assets to make good on its $30billion divestment plan for 2016-18, BP has flashed the cash with a number of big investments.

Shell said yesterday that it had raised $1.65billion (£1.33billion) in asset sales, while rival oil major BP has revealed plans to invest heavily on African licences.

Shell will make $1.4billion from the sale of a 31.2% stake in refiner Showa Shell Sekiyu to Japan’s Idemitsu Kosan, the firm said yesterday.

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Shell to offload Dragon gas port

Danny Fortson: December 18 2016: The Sunday Times

Shell has begun quietly sounding out potential buyers for its share of a giant gas- import complex in west Wales.

The FTSE 100 company owns half of Dragon LNG, a terminal at Milford Haven that reheats super-chilled liquid natural gas after it is delivered by tankers. The site has the capacity to provide 10% of Britain’s gas needs.

Petronas, Malaysia’s state oil producer, owns the other half and is likely to have first right of refusal. Dragon is yet another asset that has been put up for sale by Shell, which has pledged to raise $30bn (£24bn) through a global disposal programme to offset the cost of its takeover of rival BG.

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Shell finance boss tipped to take over the top job cashed in stock worth £1m days before he suddenly quit

By Rachel Millard For The Daily Mail: 21:58, 15 December 2016 

A finance boss at Royal Dutch Shell who was tipped to take over the top job has suddenly left – just days after he sold stock worth £1million.

Credited with leading the firm’s £41billion takeover of oil and gas group BG last year, Simon Henry was a key lieutenant of chief executive Ben van Beurden.

But the 55-year-old’s departure was announced yesterday to the shock of the markets. Relatively unknown internal finance executive Jessica Uhl has been appointed in his place.

It emerged Henry sold more than £1million of shares on December 1, within 24 hours of the historic Opec deal to cut production that then sent the price of oil soaring.

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Shell’s CFO Pick Leaves Most Analysts Asking Simply ‘Who?’

by Rakteem Katakey: 15 December 2016, 16:47 GMT

Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s appointment of Jessica Uhl as finance chief on Thursday posed one simple question for many of the analysts who follow Europe’s largest oil company: “Who?”

The 48-year-old U.S. citizen, currently head of finance for Shell’s Integrated Gas unit — a key cash cow since this year’s acquisition of BG Group Plc — will take over from Simon Henry in March. Having been at the oil major for 12 years, exclusively in finance, she has “in-depth knowledge” to execute its cash-generation plans, according to Shell.

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Debt Reduction, Cost Discipline Core Challenges for new Shell CFO

By SARAH KENT: Dec 15, 2016 8:33 am ET

Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s new finance chief has two big challenges: a mountain of debt and the pressure to keep down costs.

The British-Dutch oil giant on Thursday said its new chief financial officer will be Jessica Uhl, who is currently the top finance official for one of Shell’s most important units: Integrated Gas.

The BG merger bolstered Shell’s leading position in global natural-gas markets and led to the creation of the gas unit where Ms. Uhl worked. It also caused Shell’s net debt to balloon to $86.63 billion at the end of the third quarter…

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Shell finance chief to leave company in March

By Karolin Schaps | LONDON

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) Chief Financial Officer Simon Henry will step down in March after seven years in the post and be replaced by Jessica Uhl, a finance executive in Shell’s gas business.

Henry, a 55-year-old Shell veteran, was one of the executives who oversaw the $54 billion (43.27 billion pound) acquisition of BG Group, which completed in February, and the integration of the gas company which turned Shell into the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) trader.

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Shell finance chief Simon Henry to leave after 30 years with the oil major

Caitlin Morrison deputy digital editor at City A.M: Thursday 15 December 2016 8:47am

Royal Dutch Shell announced today that finance chief Simon Henry will step down in March 2017, to be replaced by Jessica Uhl.

Henry – who was appointed to the Lloyds Bank board in 2014 – has been with Shell for over 30 years, and has been chief financial officer for seven.

“I have been privileged to spend the past 34 years working with great colleagues, in a great company,” said Henry.

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Royal Dutch Shell – Income Investors Should Look Elsewhere

Casey Hoerth: Dec. 14, 2016 11:09 AM ET

Summary

Shell plans on between $25 billion and $30 billion in capex next year, with flexibility to the downside.

I do not expect Shell to achieve cash flow balance in 2016, even with asset sales.

I continue to recommend other energy companies over Royal Dutch Shell, until either oil prices recover more or until Shell does something else to achieve balance.

Over the course of 2016 I haven’t recommended much when it comes buying to upstream or integrated oil companies. The reason was that I felt many still weren’t doing enough to balance their money coming in versus money going out. The CEO of one of my favorite companies, in their latest analyst day, recently quipped that energy companies couldn’t afford to wait to be ‘bailed out’ by higher oil prices.

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Shell Makes Cuts to Boost Returns

Allen Good7 December, 2016

With the BG acquisition in the books, Shell (RDSB) is embarking on the necessary steps to compete in a world of $60 a barrel oil.

Like the rest of the integrated group, Shell is working to reduce its cost base, which has become bloated during the past five years, by reducing headcount and improving its supply chain.

The integration of BG is integral to Shell’s efforts, as it holds the potential for $4.5 billion of cost-reduction synergies. Furthermore, the addition of BG’s low-cost production reduces Shell’s per-barrel operating cost, which ranked among the highest in its peer group. In total, Shell aims to reduce operating cost by 20% from 2014 levels by the end of 2016, with further reductions possible in later years.

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