Baytex Energy Corp. is a Calgary-based Canadian producer, developer and explorer of oil and natural gas. Formerly a trust, it converted to a corporation January 2011 because of government changes to tax incentives. Through its subsidiaries, Baytex is "engaged in the business of acquiring, developing, exploiting and holding interests in petroleum and natural gas properties and related assets in Canada (in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan) and in the United States (in the states of North Dakota and Wyoming)." Heavy oil makes up 67% of production and 70% of reserves. Assets in Alberta and British Columbia are within the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin. Baytex was over 40%-owned by institutional investors in late 2013, including four of the big five Canadian banks and the Quebec Public Service Employees pension fund.
For fiscal 2010 total production was 44,341 US bbl/d (5,287.2 m/d, 53% from Alberta), 7% higher than the year before (with a high of over 45,015 US bbl/d (5,367.6 m/d in the fourth quarter); for the year heavy oil made up 67% of production with the rest split between light oil and natural gas (16% each). Light and medium oil (oil with an API gravity over 22.3 degrees) makes up a growing part of its reserve base.
In 2011 Baytex acquired "heavy oil assets located in the Reno area of northern Alberta and the Lloydminster area of western Saskatchewan."
By 2014 Baytex was producing about 26,000 US bbl/d (3,100 m/d) at Seal near Peace River, 18,000 US bbl/d (2,100 m/d) at Lloydminster and an anticipated 24,700 US bbl/d (2,950 m/d) in Eagle Ford.
In June 2014 Baytex acquired Aurora Oil & Gas Limited.
In 2014 Baytex 52-week high was $49.88 and its 52-week low was $14.56.
Early on (1993–2000) the company was more focused on developing light oil and natural gas containing properties in North and SE Alberta. In Jan 19, 2006, Baytex Energy Trust announced that the New York Stock Exchange had cleared Baytex to file an Original Listing Application to list its trust units on the NYSE. The company began trading on the NYSE in March 27. In April 2008 it completed a $181 million takeover of Burmis Energy Inc, a Calgary-based oil and natural gas producer (72% of production was natural gas) that was nine times smaller than Baytex at the time. The deal gave Baytex control of the Seal heavy oil property in Alberta and increased daily production by 3,650 boe. Many key heavy oil and natural gas assets were purchased from True Energy Trust in the summer of 2009 for US$79.9 million (when the US:Cdn exchange rate was 1:1.164). The deal which included properties near Lloydminster and Kerrobert, Saskatchewan (heavy oil) and also central Alberta (natural gas) increased production and cash flow by 7% and 6% respectively.
In October 2010 it sold half of the interest it had in the Kerrobert heavy oil properties to Petrobank Energy and Resources (including another asset acquired in Dawson the transaction cost Petrobank $15 million, Petrobank's THAI and CAPRI technology can help Baytex exploit more of the resource).
In February 2011 it completed a $156.5 million deal with a private company for heavy oil assets in Saskatchewan (near Seal Lake and Lloydminster). The acquisition added over 10 million boe of proved and probable reserves and raised company production by about 5%.
Several Peace River farming families have complained about "tar and solvent-like odours and emissions associated with heavy-crude operations across the region" after Baytex Energy began production. The Alberta Energy Regulator and Energy Minister Ken Hughes have publicly expressed concern about Baytex's conduct and have emphasized that the impacts being caused by Baytex are out of the ordinary. Minister Ken Hughes told CBC News the Mar. 22nd decision to put a moratorium on further drilling by Baytex in the Reno field was "unprecedented." "What I could detect was that there was something in the air that was different than the rest of Alberta," Hughes said. "This kind of development was experiencing different emissions, and different air quality problems."
The families who had all originally welcomed the energy projects onto their land report "more than two years of health effects, including severe headaches and dizziness, sinus and other medical problems", according to their lawyer Keith Wilson. Regulations have not been developed for the CHOPS method of oil sands production being used by Baytex. That is why Baytex is not technically violating any laws by open venting its bitumen processing tanks. Because emissions from these tanks are known to cause health effects and affect air quality other companies like Penn West Petroleum use fully closed vapour recovery systems. Baytex has chosen not to expend the money installing these systems on the 86 super-heated oil sands processing tanks in the area despite reporting a record 200% rate of return on investment. A return rate that Baytex claims is one of the highest for any oil project in North America. The Alberta Government has expressed serious concerns about what Baytex is doing and has taken the unprecedented step of not only not allowing Baytex any new well licences in the area and but has also convened a public inquiry. Yet Baytex continues to produce in open vented tanks and several families remain out of their homes. There are broader concerns about what Baytex's actions may do to harm the reputation of Alberta's oil sands production at a time when the Canadian government is trying to reassure its trading partners that oil sands are produced in an environmentally safe and socially responsible manner.
From a purely market point of view, Baytex VP Brian Ector, notes their high capital efficiency, high rates of return projects has been successful for shareholders.
There are 5 principal subsidiaries that the company operates through; Baytex Energy Ltd., Baytex Energy Partnership, Baytex Energy Oil & Gas Ltd and Baytex Energy (USA) Ltd. 2P reserves totalled 197 million barrels of oil equivalent at the end of 2009.
Canadian Heavy Oil
Canadian Light and Medium Oil and Gas (less than 290,000 acres of undeveloped land, produced at an average rate of 15,063 boe/d in 2009, 56.6% natural gas)
Penn West was one of a group of oil and gas producers which also included Advantage, ARC Energy, Baytex Energy, Bonavista Energy, Bonterra, Canadian Oil Sands, Crescent Point Energy, Daylight Resources, Enerplus Resources, Enterra, Fairborne Energy, Freehold Royalty, NAL Oil & Gas, Paramount, Pengrowth, Penn West Exploration, Peyto Energy, Progress Energy, Provident Energy, Trilogy, Vermillion Energy and Zargon Energy who did not pay "federal income taxes if they distributed their income to shareholders."
"The resulting double-digit dividend yields grabbed dividend investors’ attention in the mid-2000s. Eventually the government cracked down and starting in 2011, trusts were required to pay the same taxes as regular corporations. Consequently, all trusts converted to corporations, and many cut their dividends."
On January 1, 2011, Penn West converted from a CANROY to a conventional corporation.