Your statement is true. Much of the growth has been via acquisition. As the old saying goes, "sometimes it is cheaper to buy reserves than to drill for them."
It is also sometimes less risky to buy proven acreage and production.
You seem to have a real issue with Evans success. I've seen that before in folks. Kurt Wulff used to bash Kinder Morgan and Richard Kinder individually for years in his puny news letters. Kinder just kept growing Kinder Morgan from a sleepy little pipeline company to the second largest midstream MLP in the US, with an enterprise value of over $25 billion.
So far, Evans has taken a company that was dead. He set about to turn it into a thriving company. He bought Sharon's US subsidiary and got a lot of good EFS acreage. Clearly we have seen that some of it is primo (Gonzales county) and some isn't (Atascosa county). He got it for a little of nothing. He then bought Triad out of bankruptcy. Picked up around 1100 boe/d of existing production. Paid $81 million. They also got a lot of equipment, good employees and Marcellus acreage. The Triad deal was lucky. A lot of circumstances had to align for it to happen. Triad's founder died suddenly, they got themselves into a liquidity crunch and then all of their hedges were wiped out in BK court. Oil was also down around $50/bbl. Oil is now near $100. They could monetize all of the production for probably $150 million. They also got a lot of held by production Marcellus acreage and the pipeline. Granted, the pipeline was low pressure and small diameter, but the permits and right of way are what was valuable.
Now they are acquiring NGAS and NuLoch. NGAS was horribly run. Magnum is buying NGAS for the Weir oil sands play. Evans says, "it's a great call on natural gas prices". Yes it is, but he just doesn't want anyone else coming in and making a counter offer. The Weir is going to be a good play for MHR. Low geological risk, low completion risk. With oil at $100, they will make good money on it all day long.
NuLoch - One word: "Bakken".
He knows how to find bargains, as long as production per share are climbing, I am not concerned if he drills or buys the production.
I still can't figure that short guy out. IS he really that ignorant? Or just pulling our strings?
Any old fool would know that you can buy production and you can buy reserves. The only question is what kind of a deal you can make....pay too much and you lose. Pay very little and you have a chance to make some real bucks. But to think that acquired production doesn't count is, well, the epitome of ignorance.