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Company Profile: Gulfport Energy is an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company. Gulfport's principal producing properties are located along the Louisiana Gulf Coast and in the Permian Basin in West Texas, and the company also has acreage positions in the Niobrara Formation of Western Colorado and the Utica Shale of Eastern Ohio.
Share Price: $22.37 (Sept. 26)
Performance Since July 25: -37.4%
Gundlach's View: In keeping with the fund's investment strategy, Gundlach likes Gulfport because the company has shown improving growth rates in both production of oil and gas as well as reserves, and the company should be able to maintain this growth in his view.
"In the energy space, we found often that it's a better indicator of a company adding value," he says. "The company shown very strong increases in the production growth rates." In the second quarter, for example, Gulfport said produced oil and natural gas sales volumes saw a 21% year-over-year increase.
Gundlach finds the company so attractive because of the acreage it has acquired in the Utica shale in Ohio, which has been a very hot area in the oil and gas industry. Gundlach notes that
Hess(HES) recently acquired another company with acreage in the Utica shale, paying nearly $9,000 per acre.
"We estimate that Gulfport has close to 65,000 acres in the Utica shale," Gundlach says. "Doing quick math using that valuation in the marketplace, you get to a value approaching $600 million just for that Utica shale acreage. Gulfport has strong production and growth with a market cap of $1.4 billion, which we think barely recognizes the value of existing reserves and production."