Oilfield Services IPO Tumbles on Debut

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Oilfield services firm Mammoth Energy Services Inc. (NASDAQ: TUSK) priced 7.75 million shares at $15 (the low end of its expected range) for its Friday initial public offering (IPO), but the stock opened nearly 9% below that figure at $13.66. It traded as low as $13.50 before pushing back to around the opening price.

The company sold 7.5 million shares and expects net proceeds of about $103.2 million, which it plans to use to repay in full its outstanding revolving credit facility borrowings ($82.3 million as of June 30, 2016) and remaining proceeds for general corporate purposes. The remainder of the IPO shares were sold by selling stockholders, and Mammoth will not receive any proceeds from the sale of those shares. Underwriters have a 30-day option on an additional 1.163 million shares at $15 per share.

The past two years have not been especially kind to oilfield services firms like Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB), which dropped by nearly a third from October 2014 to January 2016, and Halliburton Co. (NYSE: HAL), down about 40% in the same period. Weatherford International Inc. (NYSE: WFT) dropped more than 60% and Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) tumbled 25%.

Mammoth, which specializes in services to onshore North American oil and gas companies, must have believed that rising prices for both crude oil and natural gas would lead to an expanding market for its services. The company’s core operations are located in the Permian Basin and the Utica Shale play, both among the most active regions for new exploration and drilling.

But revenue was sliced by more than half in the first six months of 2016, compared with the same period in 2015. Operating income of $4.04 million in the first half of 2015 dropped to an operating loss of $26.4 million in the first half of this year.

Contrast this week’s other energy IPO, Extraction Oil & Gas Inc. (NASDAQ: XOG), an independent production company primarily based in the Wattenberg field of the Denver-Julesburg basin. The company priced 33.33 million shares at $19, a buck higher than the expected range, and traded as high as $23 a share on Wednesday before closing at $21.85. Shares of Extraction traded at around $21.50 in the late morning on Friday.

Extraction was the first IPO of an oil and gas production company in more than two years, and Mammoth was the second. Between January of 2015 and mid-August of 2016, 102 energy firms filed for bankruptcy. The odds definitely were not in either’s favor. But a production company stands to gain more, more quickly from rising oil prices, and that may have made the difference between this week’s two IPOs.

Mammoth shares traded down 9.3% shortly before noon Friday, at $13.60 in an IPO-day range of $13.33 to $14.25.

Extraction’s stock traded up about 0.2% to $21.44, in a post-IPO range of $21.27 to $23.00.