Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) announced that it has achieved first gas production through its new Alba B3 offshore compression platform off Equatorial Guinea. Production from the B3 platform allows Marathon Oil to convert approximately 130 million barrels of oil equivalent of proved undeveloped reserves, more than doubling the Company’s remaining proved developed reserve base in EG.

“The Alba B3 compression project will allow us to maintain plateau production for the next two years, mitigating base decline, while extending the Alba Field’s life by up to eight years,” said Mitch Little, Vice President—Conventional.

“I want to highlight that the platform was completed on time and within budget, reflecting strong project management and a close collaboration with the operations team in EG. My congratulations go out to our employees and our international and Equatoguinean business partners who made this success possible.”

Execution of the Alba B3 compression project involved engineering and construction in four countries with Heerema Fabrication Group (HFG) serving as the general contractor. An Equatoguinean construction firm fabricated both the platform flare and bridge structures as part of Marathon Oil’s commitment to building local capacity within the country.

Marathon Oil’s wholly owned subsidiary Marathon E.G. Production Limited holds an approximately 65 percent working interest in the Alba Field and is the operator, while Noble Energy, Inc. owns approximately 35 percent.(Original Source)

Shares of Marathon Oil closed yesterday at $15.29, down $0.31 or -1.99%. MRO has a 1-year high of $24.68 and a 1-year low of $6.52. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $14.18 and its 200-day moving average is $11.54.

On the ratings front, MRO has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. In a report issued on July 11, Jefferies Co. analyst Jason Gammel maintained a Buy rating on MRO, with a price target of $17, which implies an upside of 11.2% from current levels. Separately, on July 8, RBC’s Scott Hanold reiterated a Hold rating on the stock and has a price target of $16.

According to, which ranks over 7,500 financial analysts and bloggers to gauge the performance of their past recommendations, Jason Gammel and Scott Hanold have a total average return of 4.3% and -2.3% respectively. Gammel has a success rate of 72.1% and is ranked #1022 out of 4055 analysts, while Hanold has a success rate of 42.9% and is ranked #3082.

The street is mostly Bullish on MRO stock. Out of 15 analysts who cover the stock, 8 suggest a Buy rating , 6 suggest a Hold and one recommends to Sell the stock. The 12-month average price target assigned to the stock is $17.60, which implies an upside of 15.1% from current levels.

Marathon Oil Corp. engages in the exploration, production, and market of liquid hydrocarbons and natural gas. It operates through the following segments: North America E&P, International E&P, and Oil Sands Mining. The North America E&P segment engages in the oil and gas exploration, development and production activities in the United States and Canada. The International E&P segment involves oil and gas exploration, development, and production activities in Angola, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Kenya, the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, Libya, Norway, and the United Kingdom. The Oil Sands segment includes mining, extracts and transports bitumen from oil sands deposits in Alberta, Canada, and upgrades the bitumen to produce and market synthetic crude oil and vacuum gas oil.