Shell's first-quarter profits soar

Europe's largest oil company makes £2m per hour.

The Sakhalin-2 LNG plant in Russia.
The Sakhalin-2 LNG plant in Russia.

The Anglo-Dutch energy giant Royal Dutch Shell has reported a net income of $8.83bn for the first quarter of 2012, a decrease of 1 per cent compared to $8.92bn for the same period last year. Nonetheless, it had a strong profit performance: on average, Shell made over £2m an hour.

Revenue increased to $119.92bn (2011: $109.92m), while current cost of supplies (CCS) earnings grew 11 per cent to $7.66bn (2011: $6.93bn).

Shell continued to divest upstream positions during the first quarter of 2012, with proceeds totalling some $2.1bn. For the quarter, the company reported upstream earnings of $6.71bn (2011: $5.76bn). Meanwhile, it continued to divest downstream positions, with proceeds totalling some $0.3bn; downstream CCS earnings were $1.32bn (2011: $1.17bn).

Peter Voser, CEO of Shell, said:

We are making good progress against our targets to deliver a more competitive performance. Our profits pay for Shell’s dividends and substantial investments in new energy projects, to ensure affordable, reliable energy supplies for our customers, which create value for our shareholders.

Voser added: 

During the quarter, production commenced at the Caesar/Tonga project in the Gulf of Mexico and the Pluto LNG project in Australia reached ready-for-start-up status. These two non-operated positions are expected to add a total of some 40 thousand barrels of oil equivalent per day at peak for Shell and 0.9 million tonnes per annum of LNG capacity.