عنوان مقاله [English]
Business conditions are fraught with uncertainty and risks. These uncertainties hold with them valuableinformation. When uncertainty becomes resolved through the passage of time, managers can make the appropriate mid-course corrections through a change in business decisions and strategies. Real options incorporate this learning model, akin to having a strategic road map, while traditional analyses that neglect this managerial flexibility will grossly undervalue certain projects and strategies. Industry analysts, experts, and academics all agree that real options provide significant insights to project evaluation that traditional types of analysis, like the discounted cash flow approach, cannot provide. On the other hand, the nature of some industries, such as oil & gas, is very critical, and every delay in making decisions or wrong decisions causes irretrievable loss. Because of this characteristic, the usage of this approach has increased in this field over the years. For economic evaluation of the oil & gas project with the real options approach, we need to estimate some input parameters, such as risk free interest rate ($r_f$), discounted rate and volatility. Among them, the volatility of the cash flow is the most important, but estimation of that is very complicated since most projects are done for the first time and, consequently, there is no historical data for project values. In many cases, the projects are also irreversible. In this paper, we have tried to facilitate the use of this approach in Iranian oil & gas industries. Different methods for volatility estimation have been investigated and a new method has been proposed. We used the profitability index as a creditable financial index for applying Monte Carlo simulation for volatility estimation. In addition, a method for determination of risk free interest rate ($r_f$) and discounted rate has been introduced. Then, we investigate the accuracy of the mentioned techniques by applying an option to defer in our case study.