As much as the current Petro Ninja – Enlighten Geoscience Well of the Week series has been a dissertation on the history of discoveries on the Peace River Arch, it has also been the tale of how these successes have fostered the cycle of start-ups recognizing a new play, selling out to a bigger company and starting over.
The Dunvegan Debolt field and Anderson Exploration is an excellent example of this pattern. It is difficult to overstate how important the small to medium-sized companies are to levels of industry activity and employment.
The focus on investors has recently, to a large extent, been on large-scale plays such as the Montney, Duvernay and Alberta oil sands. During this time there has been little interest in funding the feisty juniors that can apply new thinking to add some growth to the industry. Such tales of startups are surely fables from the past.
But hold on a minute. In 2021, in the depths of the industry’s despair, a junior that had been developing a Charlie Lake oil play cashed out in a sale to a well-run aggregator. The purchaser was happy acquiring a presence in what it described as one of the top Free Funds Flow plays in North America.
The apple of the acquisitor’s eye was exemplified by 100/16-35-075-08W6/00 which appears to be heading to a P50 EUR of 834,920.6 bbls of oil. Pretty impressive when you look at the reservoir in the offset 100/15-34-075-08W6/00.
And the team that kicked the Charlie Lake play off? They were able to go back to exploring and building up another company. The Circle of Life, as Rafiki might say.