UPDATE 3-Talisman Energy shares drop on loss, Ocensa stake for sale
* 1st-qtr loss $0.21 vs profit $0.28/shr year earlier * Production falls 19 pct to average 372,000 boepd * Selling stake in Colombian oil pipeline * Could sell Norwegian assets * Shares down 3.9 pct By Scott Haggett CALGARY, Alberta May 1 (Reuters) - In the midst of a restructuring, Talisman Energy Inc, the Canadian oil and gas producer put more assets up for sale on Wednesday as its shares fell sharply on a quarterly loss that disappointed investors. Hal Kvisle, Talisman's chief executive, said the company is looking to sell its 12.15 percent stake in the Ocensa pipeline, which carries 650,000 barrel of oil per day from Colombia's interior to Covenas, an oil port on the country's Atlantic coast. Speaking to reporters following the company's annual Calgary meeting, Kvisle said he expected to be able to quickly find a buyer for its stake in the line. He declined to say what Talisman expected to receive for the stake, the company earlier this year valued its interest in the line at $650 million. "I think we can find a buyer within six months," Kvisle said. "That would be my target." Kvisle, who took over as chief executive last September following the abrupt departure of John Manzoni, is refocusing the company's sprawling global operations to concentrate operations in North and South America and Southeast Asia and restructuring its production away from low-value natural gas. He said he expects all its assets outside its core regions could potentially be sold, including its properties in Norway's North Sea and its new discoveries in Iraq's Kurdistan region. "The Norway asset will come to market at some point," Kvisle said. "Right now there's a lot of enthusiasm in Norway as a result of big discoveries that Statoil and others have made. People are kind of excited about it and we've got some interesting acreage there, so ... we could do quite well on that one. Talisman is looking to raise as much as $3 billion from asset sales this year. Along with the Ocensa stake, the company is looking to sell lands in the North Duvernay shale-gas region of Alberta and parts of its holdings in the Montney field, which straddles Alberta and northeastern British Columbia. The company completed the sale of a 49 percent stake in its North Sea operations to Sinopec for $1.5 billion in December. SWINGS TO LOSS Talisman posted a net loss of $213 million, or 21 cents per share, in the first quarter, compared with a profit of $291 million, or 28 cents per share, a year earlier. The company's loss from operations was $60 million, or 6 cents per share, compared with a profit of $167 million, or 16 cents per share, a year earlier. Production fell 19 percent to average 372,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d). Adjusting for the UK transaction, production was essentially the same as in the fourth quarter. Talisman said its North American natural gas volumes continued to decline during the quarter, reflecting limited investment in the current price environment. This decline was largely offset by growth in Norway and Asia-Pacific. The company's cash flow, a key indicator of its ability to pay for new projects and drilling, fell 39 percent to $517 million, or 50 cents per share. Revenue and other income fell 45 percent to $1.12 billion in the quarter. Talisman, however, maintained its production forecast of 375,000 to 395,000 boe/d for the year, and said liquids volumes were expected to rise in the second half in North America, Colombia, Malaysia and Vietnam. The company stood by its 2013 capital budget of about $3 billion, with 90 percent of spending directed at high netback liquids and international gas opportunities. Talisman shares were down 47 Canadian cents to C$11.61 by late afternoon on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
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