Total Sees Expansion ‘Opportunities,’ But Not In Shale

Total is setting aside $2bn for potential acquisitions in 2017. But these won’t be in the Permian.

Building on a theme he explored in a recent MEES interview (MEES, 25 November), Total CEO Patrick Pouyanné told his firm’s 9 February Q4 earnings call “US shale is too expensive for me, I will be very straight. I studied – we spent, both of us, with Patrick, a lot of [time studying a lot of] files. I don't want to buy assets at $80 per barrel or more.”

CFO Patrick de la Chevardière adds that “This idea of shale oil being the best asset because it is a flexible investment – on and off ‘like this’ – it might be correct, but as far as I see, even in the US, where it was extremely successful, most of the small E&P companies are facing trouble. There are some very good guys… but this industry is facing trouble. So it is not so easy to make money on this matter.” (CONTINUED - 270 WORDS)