I have numerous small positions in a myriad of oil & gas E&P concerns. The continued and impressive expansion of domestic fossil fuel production driven by fracking technology provides a powerful secular tailwind to this industry. I like the small cap space as it is relatively unfollowed by analysts and some firms are experiencing amazing revenue growth as well. In addition, I think M&A in the space will accelerate as majors enter the fray and they are relatively underrepresented in the shale patch and financing is cheap currently. Here are two small E&P concerns that popped back on my radar again due to reporting good news this week. They both have also had some recent insider buying.
Evolution Petroleum Corporation (EPM) produces crude oil and natural gas in the United States. It holds interests in the Delhi Field EOR project located in northeast Louisiana; Giddings Field project located in central Texas; and Lopez Field project located in south Texas
4 reasons EPM is a good speculative growth play at under $10 a share:
- The company reported earnings this week that beat on the bottom line by a penny a share and revenues beat estimates by approximately 8% and were up 32% Y/Y.
- A couple of insiders have been purchasing shares frequently over the last few months. The company was also initiated as a "Buy" at Brean Capital in December.
- Analysts have the company growing revenues by better than 40% in FY2013 and by over 150% in FY2014.
- Investors are getting this significant growth rather cheaply. The stock is selling for less than 12x 2014's projected earnings and consensus earnings estimates for FY2014 have moved up recently.
Matador Resources Company (MTDR) is an independent energy company that primarily focuses on oil and natural gas shale plays, and other unconventional resources. Its operations are located primarily in the Eagle Ford shale play in south Texas and the Haynesville shale play in northwest Louisiana and east Texas.
4 reasons MTDR is a solid growth play at under $8 a share:
- The company just reported proved oil reserves of 10.5M barrels comprised 44% of total proved reserves, vs. 12% a year ago, attributable to its ongoing drilling program in the Eagle Ford shale.
- Several insiders purchased new shares in December.
- Revenues are projected to grow over 30% in FY2013 and the stock is selling at just 10% over book value.
- Matador has quadrupled operating cash flow over the last two fiscal years. The stock is priced at around 5x operating cash flow as well.
Disclosure: I am long MTDR.