Item 2. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
You should read the following discussion of our financial condition and results of operations in conjunction with the financial statements and notes thereto included elsewhere in this report.
The historical financial statements included in this report reflect (1) for periods prior to March 7, 2014, the assets, liabilities and operations of EnLink Midstream Holdings, LP Predecessor (the “Predecessor”), the predecessor to EnLink Midstream Holdings, LP (“Midstream Holdings”), which is the historical predecessor of EnLink Midstream Partners, LP and (2) for periods on or after March 7, 2014, the results of operations of EnLink Midstream Partners, LP after giving effect to the business combination discussed under “Devon Energy Transaction” below . The Predecessor was comprised of all of the U.S. midstream assets and operations of Devon Energy Corporation (“Devon”) prior to the business combination, including its 38.75% economic interest in Gulf Coast Fractionators ("GCF"). However, in connection with the business combination, only the Predecessor’s systems serving the Barnett, Cana-Woodford and Arkoma-Woodford Shales in Texas and Oklahoma, as well as the economic burdens and benefits of the 38.75% economic interest in GCF, were contributed to Midstream Holdings, effective as of March 7, 2014.
You should read this discussion in conjunction with the historical financial statements and accompanying notes included in this report. All references in this section to the "Partnership", as well as the terms “our,” “we,” “us” and “its” (1) for periods prior to March 7, 2014 refer to the Predecessor and (2) for periods on or after March 7, 2014 refer to EnLink Midstream Partners, LP, together with its consolidated subsidiaries including EnLink Midstream Operating, LP (the "Operating Partnership") and Midstream Holdings.
We are a Delaware limited partnership formed on July 12, 2002. We primarily focus on providing midstream energy services, including gathering, processing, transmission, fractionation, condensate stabilization, brine services and marketing to producers of natural gas, NGLs, crude oil and condensate. Our midstream energy asset network includes approximately 9,200 miles of pipelines, sixteen natural gas processing plants, seven fractionators, 3.1 million barrels of NGL cavern storage, 11.0 Bcf of natural gas storage, rail terminals, barge terminals, truck terminals and a fleet of approximately 140 trucks. We manage and report our activities primarily according to nature of activity and geography. We have five reportable segments: (1) Texas, which includes our natural gas gathering, processing and transmission activities in north Texas and the Permian Basin in west Texas; (2) Oklahoma, which includes our natural gas gathering, processing and transmission activities in Cana-Woodford and Arkoma-Woodford Shale areas; (3) Louisiana, which includes our natural gas pipelines, natural gas processing plants and NGL assets located in Louisiana; (4) Crude and Condensate, which includes our Ohio River Valley ("ORV") crude oil, condensate and brine disposal activities in the Utica and Marcellus Shales, our equity interests in E2 Energy Services, LLC, E2 Appalachian Compression, LLC and E2 Ohio Compression, LLC (collectively, “E2”), our crude oil operations in the Permian Basin and our crude oil activities associated with the Victoria Express Pipeline and related truck terminal and storage assets("VEX") located in the Eagle Ford shale; and (5) Corporate, which includes our equity investments in Howard Energy Partners, in the Eagle Ford Shale, our contractual right to the economic burdens and benefits associated with Devon's ownership interest in GCF in south Texas and our general partnership property and expenses.
We manage our operations by focusing on gross operating margin because our business is generally to purchase and resell natural gas, NGLs, crude oil and condensate for a margin or to gather, process, transport or market natural gas, NGLs, crude oil and condensate for a fee. In addition, we earn a volume based fee for brine disposal services and condensate stabilization. We define gross operating margin as operating revenue minus cost of purchased gas, NGLs, condensate and crude oil. Gross operating margin is a non-generally accepted accounting principle ("non-GAAP") financial measure and is explained in greater detail under “Non-GAAP Financial Measures” below.
Our gross operating margins are determined primarily by the volumes of natural gas gathered, transported, purchased and sold through our pipeline systems, processed at our processing facilities, the volumes of NGLs handled at our fractionation facilities, the volumes of crude oil and condensate handled at our crude terminals, the volumes of crude oil and condensate gathered, transported, purchased and sold, the volume of brine disposed and the volume of condensate stabilized. We generate revenues from eight primary sources:
•purchasing and reselling or transporting natural gas and NGLs on the pipeline systems we own;
•processing natural gas at our processing plants;
•fractionating and marketing the recovered NGLs;
•providing compression services;
•purchasing and reselling crude oil and condensate;
•providing crude oil and condensate transportation and terminal services;
•providing condensate stabilization services; and
•providing brine disposal services.
We generally gather or transport gas owned by others through our facilities for a fee, or we buy natural gas from a producer, plant or shipper at either a fixed discount to a market index or a percentage of the market index, then transport and resell the natural gas at the market index. We attempt to execute all purchases and sales substantially concurrently, or we enter into a future delivery obligation, thereby establishing the basis for the margin we will receive for each natural gas transaction. Our gathering and transportation margins related to a percentage of the index price can be adversely affected by declines in the price of natural gas. We are also party to certain long-term gas sales commitments that we satisfy through supplies purchased under long-term gas purchase agreements. When we enter into those arrangements, our sales obligations generally match our purchase obligations. However, over time the supplies that we have under contract may decline due to reduced drilling or other causes and we may be required to satisfy the sales obligations by buying additional gas at prices that may exceed the prices received under the sales commitments. In our purchase/sale transactions, the resale price is generally based on the same index at which the gas was purchased. However, on occasion we have entered into certain purchase/sale transactions in which the purchase price is based on a production-area index and the sales price is based on a market-area index, and we capture the difference in the indices (also referred to as basis spread), less the transportation expenses from the two areas, as our margin. Changes in the basis spread can increase or decrease our margins.
We have made commitments to purchase natural gas in production areas based on production-area indices and to sell the natural gas into market areas based on market-area indices, pay the costs to transport the natural gas between the two points and capture the difference between the indices as margin. Changes in the index prices relative to each other (also referred to as basis spread) can significantly affect our margins or potentially result in losses. For example, we are a party to one contract with a term to 2019 to supply approximately 150,000 MMBtu/d of gas. We buy gas for this contract on several different production-area indices on our North Texas Pipeline and sell the gas into a different market area index. We realize a cash loss on the delivery of gas under this contract each month based on current prices. The fair value of this performance obligation was recorded as a result of the March 7, 2014 business combination and was based on forecasted discounted cash obligations in excess of market prices under this gas delivery contract. As of March 31, 2015, the balance sheet reflects a liability of $76.2 million related to this performance obligation. Reduced supplies and narrower basis spreads in recent periods have increased the cash losses on this contract, and greater losses on this contract could occur in future periods if these conditions persist or become worse.
The majority of our NGL fractionation business, which includes transportation, fractionation, and storage, is under fee-based arrangements. We are typically paid a fixed fee based on the volume of NGLs transported, fractionated or stored. On our Cajun-Sibon pipeline, we buy the mixed NGL stream from our suppliers for an indexed-based price for the component NGLs with a deduction for our fractionation fee. After the NGLs are fractionated, we sell the fractionated NGL products based on the same ind
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