CHESAPEAKE GRANITE WASH TRUST Trustee’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations (Form 10-Q)
The following discussion and analysis is intended to help the reader understand the Trust's financial condition and results of operations. This discussion and analysis should be read in conjunction with the Trust's unaudited interim financial statements and the accompanying notes relating to the Trust and the
Underlying Propertiesincluded in Item 1 of Part I of this Quarterly Report as well as the Trust's 2021 Form 10-K.
COVID-19 pandemic and impact on global demand for
The global spread of COVID-19 has created significant volatility, uncertainty, and economic disruption. The pandemic has resulted in widespread adverse impacts on the global economy and on Diversified and Diversified's customers and other parties with whom it has business relations. To date, Diversified has experienced limited operational impacts as a result of COVID-19 or the related governmental restrictions. We cannot predict the full impact that COVID-19 or the current significant disruption and volatility in the oil and natural gas markets will have on Diversified's business, cash flows, liquidity, financial condition and results of operations. For additional discussion regarding risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, see Part II, Item 7. Trustee's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations in our 2021 Form 10-K and Item 1A "Risk Factors" in our 2021 Form 10-K.
Military conflict in
We are actively monitoring the military conflict in
Ukraineand assessing its impact on the Trust's business. To date, we have not experienced any material interruptions to our business given our properties are exclusively located within the United States. The extent and duration of the military action, sanctions and resulting market disruptions could be significant, including significant volatility in commodity prices, supply of energy resources, instability in financial markets, supply chain interruptions, political and social instability, changes in consumer or purchaser preferences as well as increases in cyberattacks and espionage, each of which could have a substantial impact on the global economy and consequently our business for an unknown period of time. We currently do not expect any material impact on the Trust's business, cash flows, liquidity or financial condition; however, we have no way to predict the progress or outcome of the military conflict in Ukraineas the conflict, and any resulting government reactions, are rapidly developing and beyond our control.
The Trust is a statutory trust formed in
June 2011under the Delaware Statutory Trust Act. The business and affairs of the Trust are managed by the Trustee and, as necessary, the Delaware Trustee. The Trust does not conduct any operations or activities other than owning the Royalty Interests and activities related to such ownership. The Trust's purpose is generally to own the Royalty Interests, to distribute to the Trust unitholders cash that the Trust receives in respect of the Royalty Interests and to perform certain administrative functions in respect of the Royalty Interests and the Trust units. The Trust derives all or substantially all of its income and cash flow from the Royalty Interests. The Trust is treated as a partnership for U.S.federal income tax purposes. Concurrent with the Trust's initial public offering in November 2011, Chesapeake conveyed the Royalty Interests to the Trust effective July 1, 2011, which included interests in (a) 69 Producing Wells in the Colony Granite Wash play and (b) 118 Development Wells that Chesapeake was obligated to drill, cause to be drilled or participate as a non-operator in the drilling of, from drill sites in the AMI, on or prior to June 30, 2016. As of June 30, 2016, Chesapeake fulfilled its drilling obligation under the development agreement. Chesapeake retained an interest in each of the Producing Wells and Development Wells, which were acquired by Diversified pursuant to the Assignment Agreement, and Diversified currently operates 96% of the Producing Wells and the completed Development Wells.
The Trust was not responsible for any costs related to the drilling of the development wells and is not responsible for any other operating or capital costs of the
complete any well in the Colony Granite Wash Formation on any area included in the AMI for its own account until it has satisfied its drilling obligation to the Trust.
The Royalty Interests entitle the Trust to receive 90% of the proceeds (after deducting certain post-production expenses and any applicable taxes) from the sales of production of oil, natural gas and NGL attributable to Diversified's net revenue interest in the Producing Wells and 50% of the proceeds (after deducting certain post-production expenses and any applicable taxes) from the sales of oil, natural gas and NGL production attributable to Diversified's net revenue interest in the Development Wells. Post-production expenses generally consist of costs incurred to gather, store, compress, transport, process, treat, dehydrate and market the oil, natural gas and NGL produced. However, the Trust is not responsible for costs of marketing services provided by Diversified or Diversified affiliates. The Trust is required to make quarterly cash distributions of substantially all of its cash receipts, after deducting the Trust's administrative expenses, on or about 60 days following the completion of each calendar quarter through (and including) the quarter ending
June 30, 2031. During the three months ended March 31, 2022, a distribution was paid on March 3, 2022. See Liquidity and Capital Resources below and Note 5 to the financial statements contained in Item 1 of Part I of this Quarterly Report for more information regarding these distributions.
The amount of Trust income and cash distributions to Trust Unitholders fluctuates from quarter to quarter depending on several factors, including but not limited to:
• Timing and amount of production and sales from development and production wells;
• Price of oil, natural gas and NGLs received;
•Volumes of oil, natural gas and NGLs produced and sold;
•Certain post-production expenses and all applicable taxes; and
Results of fiduciary operations
The quarterly payments to the Trust with respect to the Royalty Interests are based on the amount of proceeds actually received by Diversified during the preceding calendar quarter. Proceeds from production are typically received by Diversified in the month following the month of production. Due to the timing of the payment of production proceeds, quarterly distributions made by Diversified to the Trust generally include royalties attributable to sales of oil, natural gas and NGL for three months, comprised of the first two months of the quarter just ended and the last month of the quarter prior to that one. Diversified is required to make the Royalty Interest payments to the Trust within 35 days after the end of each calendar quarter. During the three months ended
March 31, 2022, the Trust received payments on the Royalty Interests representing royalties attributable to proceeds from sales of oil, natural gas and NGL for September 1, 2021to November 30, 2021. The Trust's revenues and distributable income available to unitholders were affected throughout 2021 and to date in 2022 by natural declines in production and commodity price volatility. The Trust expects production to decline further and expects distributable income to continue to be adversely affected. The Trust's Investment in Royalty Interests is subject to a quarterly full cost ceiling test. The Trust recognized no impairment of the Royalty Interests in the Current Quarter. The Trust recognized a $0.84 millionimpairment of the Royalty Interests in the Prior Quarter. See Investmentin Royalty Interests in Note 2 to the financial statements contained in Item 1 of Part I of this Quarterly Report for further discussion. 11 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Distributable Income Three Months Ended March 31, 2022 2021 Change ($ in thousands, except per unit data) Distributable income available to unitholders
$ 3,120 $ 294961 % Distributable income per common unit $ 0.0667 $ 0.0063959 % The $2.83 millionincrease in distributable income during the Current Quarterwas primarily due to an increase in the average realized price per boe in the production period from September 1, 2021to November 30, 2021(the " Current Production Quarter") as compared to the production period from September 1, 2020to November 30, 2020(the "Prior Production Quarter"), combined with an increase in total sales volumes in the Current Production Quarter. Royalty Income Three Months Ended March 31, 2022 2021 Change ($ in thousands, except per unit data) Royalty income(a) $ 3,693 $ 954287 % Estimated production from trust properties: Oil sales volumes (MBbl) 15 10 50 % Natural gas sales volumes (MMcf) 336 340 (1) % Natural gas liquids sales volumes (MBbl) 40 31 29 % Total sales volumes (Mboe) 111 98 13 % Average prices received for production(b): Oil ($/Bbl) $ 73.92 $ 33.37122 % Natural gas ($/Mcf)(c) $ 3.43 $ 0.68404 % Natural gas liquids ($/Bbl) $ 35.17 $ 12.47182 % Total average price received ($/boe) $ 33.15 $ 9.75240 %
(a) Net of certain post-production costs.
(b) Includes the impact of certain post-production expenses but excludes production taxes.
(c) The Trust was affected by lower commodity prices in early 2021 due to the impact of COVID-19
The increase in the average price received per barrel of oil equivalent (boe) in the
Current Production Quartercompared to the Prior Production Quarterresulted in an increase of approximately $2.61 millionin royalty income. The increase in royalty income is primarily attributable to an increase in commodity pricing. Additionally, higher sales volumes in the Current Production Quarterincreased royalty income by approximately $0.13 million, for a total increase in royalty income of approximately $2.74 millionin the Current Production Quartercompared to the Prior Production Quarter. The 13 mboe increase in total sales attributable to the Royalty Interests for the Current Production Quartercompared to the Prior Production Quarteris primarily the result of improved operational performance, offset by natural declines in production from the Producing Wells and Development Wells. 12 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Production Taxes Three Months Ended March 31, 2022 2021 Change ($ in thousands, except per unit data)
Production tax expenses $ 263
$ 56(370) % Production taxes per boe $ 2.37 $ 0.57(316) % Production taxes are calculated as a percentage of oil, natural gas and NGL revenues, net of any applicable tax credits. The increase in production taxes in the Current Quartercompared to the Prior Quarter relates primarily to an increase in royalty income. Trust Administrative Expenses Three Months Ended March 31, 2022 2021 Change ($ in thousands) Trust administrative expenses(a) $ 211
(a) Includes a change in cash advances resulting in a
Trust administrative expenses primarily consist of the administrative fees paid to the Trustees and Diversified, as well as costs for accounting and legal services. The decrease in expenses in the
Current Quarteris primarily related to accounting, tax preparation, and regulatory compliance expenses. 13 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cash and capital resources
The Trust's principal sources of liquidity and capital are cash flows generated from the Royalty Interests and the loan commitment as described below. The Trust's primary uses of cash are distributions to Trust unitholders, payments of production taxes, payments of Trust administrative expenses, including any reserves established by the Trustee for future liabilities and repayment of loans and payments of expense reimbursements to Diversified for out-of-pocket expenses incurred on behalf of the Trust. Administrative expenses include payments to the Trustees, as well as a quarterly fee of
$50,000to Diversified pursuant to an administrative services agreement. Each quarter, the Trustee determines the amount of funds available for distribution. Available funds are the excess cash, if any, received by the Trust from the sales of oil, natural gas and NGL production attributable to the Royalty Interests during the quarter, over the Trust's expenses for the quarter and any cash reserve for the payment of liabilities of the Trust. The Trust does not undertake or control any capital projects or capital expenditures. These capital expenditures, if any, are controlled and paid by Diversified. The Trust's revenue and distributions are substantially dependent upon the prevailing and future prices for oil, natural gas and NGL, each of which depends on numerous factors beyond the Trust's control such as economic conditions, regulatory developments and competition from other energy sources. Oil, natural gas and NGL prices historically have been volatile and may be subject to significant fluctuations in the future; however, the volatility in the prices for these commodities has substantially increased as a result of COVID-19. We expect to see continued volatility in oil and natural gas prices for the foreseeable future, and such volatility has impacted and is expected to continue to impact Diversified's business, financial condition and results of operations and proceeds to the Trust and the Trust's reserves and quarterly cash distributions to unitholders. The Trust does not have the ability to enter into derivative contracts to mitigate the effect of this price volatility. The Trustee may increase or decrease the targeted amount of the cash reserve at any time, and may increase or decrease the rate at which it is withholding funds to build the cash reserve at any time, without advance notice to the unitholders. Without limiting the foregoing, the Trustee has reviewed the adequacy and sufficiency of the existing cash reserve and determined that, commencing with the distribution to unitholders for the fourth quarter 2021, the Trustee began withholding the funds otherwise available for distribution to the unitholders each quarter to increase existing cash reserves by a total of approximately $3,200,000over a period of several quarters. Cash held in reserve will be invested as required by the Trust Agreement. Any cash reserved in excess of the amount necessary to pay or provide for the payment of future known, anticipated or contingent expenses or liabilities eventually will be distributed to unitholders, together with interest earned on the funds. As of March 31, 2022, $893,328has been withheld to increase cash reserves. The Trust is required to make quarterly cash distributions of substantially all of its cash receipts, after deducting the Trust's administrative expenses, on or about 60 days following the completion of each calendar quarter through (and including) the quarter ending June 30, 2031. The 2022 first quarter distribution of $0.0667per common unit, consisting of proceeds attributable to production from September 1, 2021through November 30, 2021, (net of administrative expenses) was made on March 3, 2022to record unitholders as of February 21, 2022. 14
May 4, 2022, the Trust declared the May 2022Distribution. The Trust's quarterly income available for distribution was $0.0540per common unit consisting of proceeds attributable to production from December 1, 2021to February 28, 2022(net of administrative expenses). The distribution will be paid on May 31, 2022to common unitholders of record as of May 20, 2022. All Trust unitholders share on a pro rata basis in the Trust's distributable income. Distributable income attributable to production from December 1, 2021to February 28, 2022was calculated as follows (in thousands, except for unit and per unit amounts): REVENUES: Royalty income(a) $ 3,233EXPENSES: Production taxes (228) Trust administrative expenses(b) (382) Total expenses (610) Cash withheld to increase cash reserves (99) Distributable income available to common unitholders $ 2,524Distributable income per common unit(c) $ 0.0540
(a) Net of certain post-production costs.
(b) Includes the quarterly change in the cash advance leading to an increase in administrative expenses totaling
(c) The calculation of distributable income per Ordinary Unit is based on 46,750,000 Ordinary Units issued and outstanding at
The Trustee can authorize the Trust to borrow money to pay Trust expenses that exceed cash held by the Trust. The Trustee may authorize the Trust to borrow from the Trustee as a lender provided the terms of the loan are fair to the Trust unitholders. The Trustee may also deposit funds awaiting distribution in an account with itself, if the interest paid to the Trust at least equals amounts paid by the Trustee on similar deposits, and make other short-term investments with the funds distributed to the Trust. The Trustee may also hold funds awaiting distribution in a non-interest-bearing account. Pursuant to the Trust Agreement, if at any time the Trust's cash on hand (including cash reserves, if any) is not sufficient to pay the Trust's ordinary course expenses as they become due, Diversified will loan funds to the Trust necessary to pay such expenses. Any funds loaned by Diversified pursuant to this commitment will be limited to the payment of current accounts payable or other obligations to trade creditors in connection with obtaining goods or services or the payment of other current liabilities arising in the ordinary course of the Trust's business and may not be used to satisfy Trust indebtedness for borrowed money of the Trust. If Diversified loans funds pursuant to this commitment, unless Diversified agrees otherwise in writing, no further distributions may be made to unitholders (except in respect of any previously determined quarterly cash distribution amount) until such loan is repaid. There were no loans outstanding as of
March 31, 2022and December 31, 2021.
Significant Accounting Policies and Estimates
Refer to Note 2 to the financial statements contained in Item 1 of Part I of this Quarterly Report for a discussion of significant accounting policies and estimates that impact the Trust's financial statements. Critical accounting policies and estimates relating to the Trust are contained in Item 7 of Part II of the 2021 Form 10-K. 15
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