Pre-tax profit at Africa-focused oil and gas giant Tullow Oil broke through the one billion dollar barrier in 2011, helped by a ramp-up in production and significantly higher commodity prices.
"2011 was a very good year for Tullow. Industry leading exploration success continued with the opening of a major new basin offshore French Guiana as well as further discoveries in Africa," the firm said.
Pre-tax profit for the 12 months ended December 31st surged by 499% from $179m to $1,073m on sales that jumped 111% from $1,090m to a record $2,304m.
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Working interest production increased by 35% during the year, from 58,100 barrels of oil equivalents per day (bopped) to 78,200, while the realised oil price was 38% higher at $108 per barrel, from $78 per barrel in 2010.
Tullow said it was "another year of industry leading exploration and appraisal (E&A) performance", boasting a 74% success ratio.
The strong results prompted the group to double its full-year dividend from 6p to 12p per share.
Operating cash flow (before working capital) also surged, up 132% from $789m to $1,832.
"Tullow now has a strong balance sheet providing financial flexibility and a solid foundation for future growth," the group said.
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