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Trap Oil Group plc (TRAP)

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Wednesday 09 January, 2013

Trap Oil Group plc

Operational Update

RNS Number : 1906V
Trap Oil Group plc
09 January 2013




Trap Oil Group plc

("Trapoil" or the "Company")


Operational Update


Romeo Discovery and Licence Relinquishments


Trapoil (AIM: TRAP), the independent oil and gas exploration, appraisal and production company focused on the UK Continental Shelf ("UKCS") region of the North Sea, is pleased to provide an operational update in respect of its Romeo exploration well and certain licence relinquishments.

Romeo Discovery

Further to the Company's announcement of 27 December 2012, field operations are now close to being completed on the Romeo (Licence P.1666, Block 30/11c) exploration prospect ("Romeo"). This 'tight hole' exploration well has been drilled to a depth of 15,319ft Measured Depth (15,051ft Total Vertical Depth Sub Sea) in accordance with industry standard High Temperature High Pressure practices and has therefore reached its targeted total depth and has satisfied the licence obligation. The well encountered hydrocarbons at three different stratigraphic levels within the Jurassic and Triassic comprising in aggregate some 200ft of gross oil pay. The oil encountered was of a similar type to the nearby Fulmar Field and was recovered to the surface from one of the three zones.  Another fluid sample was recovered from a second stratigraphic level and is currently being analysed. No cores were cut but an extensive wireline evaluation has been undertaken. A wireline test was planned but had to be cancelled due to poor hole conditions. No drill stem tests have been conducted.

Having suffered drilling delays due to adverse weather conditions and operational difficulties, the well is now being plugged and abandoned in accordance with the partnership group's agreed work programme. Trapoil's management currently believes that an additional well penetration is required on the northern side of the structure where the seismic character is very different to that penetrated by the subject well. Further appraisal work is required in order to fully evaluate the potential of the Romeo prospect and provide guidance on oil volumes.

The partners in Licence P.1666 are Suncor Energy UK Limited (50.625 per cent., operator), Norwegian Energy Company UK Limited (21.875 per cent.), First Oil and Gas Limited (15.0 per cent.) and Trapoil (12.5 per cent.). Trapoil's 12.5 per cent. licence interest is fully carried and, accordingly, the Company is fully carried in respect of the Romeo exploration well.


The well was drilled jointly with Total E&P UK Limited which has a 100 per cent. interest and is the operator of the neighbouring Block 29/15a on Licence P.1816.




Licence Relinquishments


Trapoil announces that with effect from 9 January 2013, it has relinquished, to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, its interests in three Promote Licences, being Inverewe (Licence P.1864, Block 9/24d) ("Inverewe"), Lytham (Licence P.1856, Blocks 41/5, 10 & 42/1) ("Lytham") and (Licence P.1859, Block 43/24d) ("P.1859"), together with one Traditional Licence, Sienna (Licence P.1776, Block 16/23b) ("Sienna").

The Company's wholly owned subsidiary, Trap Oil Limited, held an 80 per cent. working interest in Inverewe, having farmed out 20 per cent. to JX Nippon Exploration and Production (U.K.) Limited in November 2011; a 100 per cent. working interest in Lytham; and a 30 per cent. working interest in P.1859, the remaining partners being Centrica Resources Limited 40 per cent. and Holywell Resources Limited 30 per cent.. The partners in Sienna  were Suncor Energy UK Limited 49.5 per cent. working interest; Norwegian Energy Company (UK) Limited 22.5 per cent. working interest and Trapoil 28 per cent. working interest (of which 8 per cent. was carried). The Company conducted extensive discussions with a number of potential farm-in partners in respect of the majority of the aforementioned licences, however, due to difficult economic and industry conditions, including budget constraints and the cost and availability of drilling rigs, it was not possible to secure partners prior to the expiry of the two year term of the promote licences and, in the case of Sienna, before expiry of a drill-or-drop licence obligation.

Mark Groves Gidney, Chief Executive Officer of Trapoil, commented:


"I am delighted that the Romeo well has successfully discovered oil as it was one of our 'home grown' prospects for which we earned a fully carried interest. We have now discovered oil in both wells drilled to date and look forward to the next well in our ongoing 2013 programme. It is unfortunate that at the same time we have had to relinquish some promising licence interests, which is symptomatic of the prevailing difficult economic and industry environment, however the group remains well placed to progress the remainder of its asset portfolio and secure additional opportunities."



Trap Oil Group plc


Mark Groves Gidney, CEO


Tel:  0203 170 5586


Strand Hanson Limited

James Harris

Matthew Chandler

James Spinney


Tel:  0207 409 3494

Mirabaud Securities LLP

Peter Krens


Tel:  0207 321 2508

FirstEnergy Capital LLP

Hugh Sanderson

David van Erp


Tel:  0207 448 0200


Cardew Group

Tim Robertson

Shan Shan Willenbrock

Lauren Foster


Tel:  0207 930 0777

[email protected]



Martin David, Technical Director of the Company, has reviewed and approved the technical information contained within this announcement in his capacity as a qualified person under the AIM Rules. Mr David holds a BSc degree in Geology from the University of London and has over 37 years experience in the oil industry.


Notes to editors:


·      The Group was created in 2008 by a team of experienced industry executives with a broad range of oil and gas technical, operational and financial expertise and professional skills.


·      Trapoil has developed long term relationships with key oil industry partnersand major suppliers and consultants including CGGVeritas Services (UK) Limited ("CGGVeritas"), Applied Drilling Technology International and Exploration Geosciences Limited.


·      The Company utilises a research-led, knowledge-based approach to identify and deliver promising exploration and appraisal opportunities, and to this end has secured extensive long term access to CGGVeritas' state of the art 3D seismic database over the majority of the Central North Sea area on negotiated terms. CGGVeritas is a leading pure-play geophysical services and equipment provider.  Access to such 3D seismic data serves to strengthen the Group's ability to create opportunities on both open and held acreage in the UKCS.



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