Scottish operator Cairn Energy has come out of the red and into the black after a surge in profit for the first half of 2019.
The Edinburgh-headquartered firm saw pre-tax profit reach £35 million, up from a £487m deficit during the same period last year.
Cairn also saw revenues jump from £147 in H1 2018 to £218m in the first period of 2019.
It also said drilling was “about to commence” on its North Sea Chimera exploration well, in which Cairn holds a 45% stake.
Chimera is located east of Shetland, near the Ninian field.
Work was due to start on August 1 2019.
The company originally owned 100% of Chimera before selling a 40% stake to Canadian firm Suncor Energy.
The Chimera prospect is though to hold up to 154 million barrels of oil equivalent.
Cairn’s Oil production estimate was also upgraded to 21,000-23,000 bopd from 19,000-22,000 bopd.
Simon Thomson, chief executive of Cairn Energy, said: “As a full cycle E&P business Cairn has seen good progress in the first half of 2019 with the opportunity to develop and deliver multiple catalysts for future growth.
“Production performance from our North Sea assets is ahead of expectations, delivering significant cash flow to reinvest in the portfolio.
“The SNE development in Senegal, where FID is expected in H2, remains on schedule for first oil in 2022.
“Our drilling programme is about to commence offshore Mexico, where Cairn has built a material footprint in one of the world’s most prolific basins.
“Recent portfolio acreage additions provide line of sight to future high potential exploration prospects.”