Cobalt International Energy provides operational update on its West Africa and GoM drilling operations


Cobalt International Energy provides operational update on its West Africa and GoM drilling operations

HOUSTON -- Cobalt International Energy provided an update on its deepwater drilling operations in West Africa and the Gulf of Mexico, and said that it has entered into a new rig contract.

“The Diaman #1 well results represent an excellent start to the exploration of the emerging pre-salt basin in deepwater Gabon”.

In West Africa, Total Gabon's Diaman #1B well, drilled on the Diaba block offshore Gabon, has reached a TD of 5,585 m, and encountered 50-55 m of net hydrocarbons in its pre-salt objective.

The Diaman #1B well has successfully confirmed the existence of a working petroleum system. Early indications are that the discovered hydrocarbons are gas with condensate. A full analysis of the hydrocarbon encountered in the sandstone reservoirs will be conducted. The Diaman #1B well, located in 1,729 m of water, is more than 100 km from the nearest pre-salt commercial discovery and is the first test of the pre-salt in deepwater Gabon. The well will be temporarily abandoned pending further technical and commercial analysis. Cobalt owns a 21.25 % working interest in the Diaman #1B well.

Also in West Africa, Cobalt confirmed that operations continue to progress on the Lontra #1 well in Block 20 and the Mavinga #1 well in Block 21, offshore Angola. Results from these wells are anticipated later in the Q3 or early in Q4. Cobalt owns a 40 % working interest and is the operator of both wells.

In the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, Cobalt announced that its Ardennes #1 exploratory well in Green Canyon Block 896, which targeted both Miocene and Inboard Lower Tertiary reservoirs, reached its objective total depth of 11,141 m. While reservoir sands were encountered in the well, neither targeted zone contained commercial hydrocarbons.

Cobalt, as operator, owns a 42 % working interest in Ardennes. In addition, on August 5, 2013, Cobalt executed a drilling contract with Rowan Reliance, an affiliate of Rowan Companies, a new build, ultra deepwater dynamically positioned drillship. This state of the art deepwater rig, equipped with a 2.5 million pound hookload capacity and two seven ram BOP systems, provides the robust drilling and safety capabilities needed to drill all of Cobalt’s deepwater Gulf of Mexico wells, including Cobalt’s Inboard Lower Tertiary exploratory wells and Cobalt’s North Platte appraisal wells. The Rowan Reliance drillship will be capable of operating in water depths of up to 3,048 m and drilling to measured depths of up to 12,192 m. The drilling contract provides for a firm three year commitment, expected to begin in early 2015, at a day rate of $602,000 and two one year extension options at day rates to be mutually agreed.

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