April 25, 2012 / 11:33 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Cenovus profit jumps on higher production

* Q1 EPS C$0.56 vs C$0.06 year ago

* Q1 cash flow up 30 pct

* Sees Q2 refining operating cash flow of C$300-C$400 mln

April 25 (Reuters) - Cenovus Energy Inc, Canada's second-largest independent oil producer, reported a nine-fold jump in first-quarter profit on higher production and said it continues to look for a partner to develop oil sands assets in Alberta.

The company, which has a refining joint venture with ConocoPhillips, has been looking for a partner for its proposed 90,000 barrels per day Telephone Lake project in northern Alberta.

For the second quarter, the company expects refining operating cash flow of C$300 million to C$400 million, excluding inventory adjustments.

Net income for the quarter rose to C$426 million ($431 million), or 56 Canadian cents per share, from C$47 million, or 6 Canadian cents per share, a year ago.

Operating earnings, which exclude most one-time and unusual items, rose to C$340 million, or 45 Canadian cents per share, from C$209 million, or 28 Canadian cents per share, a year ago.

Cash flow, a glimpse into the company's ability to pay for new projects, was up more than 30 percent to C$904 million, or C$1.19 per share, mainly on higher oil prices and production.

"Production from our oil sands and conventional oil projects continues to increase," Chief Executive Brian Ferguson said in a statement.

Total oil and natural-gas liquids production rose 14 percent to average 156,850 barrels per day (bpd).

Combined production from the Foster Creek and Christina Lake oil sands operations rose 23 percent to about 82,000 bpd.

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