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UKCS 31st Round Blocks Offered

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RNS Number : 1484B
Baron Oil PLC
05 June 2019

Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) Disclosure

Certain information contained in this announcement would have been deemed inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 until the release of this announcement.


5 June 2019


Baron Oil Plc

("Baron" or "the Company")


UKCS 31st Round blocks offered


Baron Oil Plc (AIM: BOIL), the AIM-listed oil and gas exploration and production company, is pleased to announce that it has been offered the award of Innovate license blocks on the United Kingdom Continental Shelf ("UKCS") under the 31st Offshore Licensing Round.  The awards are dependent on satisfying the conditions laid down by the UK Oil & Gas Authority.

·    Baron offered 15% in blocks 11/23, 11/24c and 11/25b, surrounding the Wick Prospect, with potential in the existing Knockinnon discovery and additional prospects;

·    Baron offered 15% in Moray Firth blocks 12/27c, 17/5, 18/1 and 18/2, containing a new exploration play up-dip from the 12/27-1 discovery, with Pmean Prospective Resources of 187 mmboe in the Dunrobin Prospect and 23.5 mmboe in the Golspie Prospect

·    Baron offered 8% in blocks 98/11b ands 98/12, containing 30% of Colter South, the Ballard South gas discovery and the offshore part of the Purbeck Prospect

In each of the areas, Corallian Energy Limited ("Corallian") will be the operator. 


Inner Moray Firth North (Baron 15%)

The Corallian-operated group has been offered Blocks 11/23, 11/24c and 11/25b in the Inner Moray Firth. These blocks form contiguous acreage located nearshore to the NE Scottish coast, 135 km NW of Aberdeen, in an average 30 metres water depth, in the Inner Moray Firth sector of the Central North Sea.

Block 11/24c block contains the Knockinnon Beatrice age oil discovery which is located approximately 8 km off the Scottish coast, and 7 km south of the Lybster Field. It was discovered by well 11/24a-2 and its sidetrack 11/24a-2z, drilled in 2000 by Talisman. Underlying the Knockinnon discovery is a mapped sub-thrust footwall anticline (the Alpha prospect). The block also contains the Whaligoe (extending to Block 11/25b), Camster and Camster South Prospects, which are downthrown against the Great Glen fault system. Block 11/23 contains the Dunbeath Prospect, a Beatrice level three-way upthrown fault bounded trap.

Within Phase A of the Innovate licence, 3D reprocessing is required, followed by a drill or drop decision within 3 years.


Inner Moray Firth South (Baron 15%)

The Corallian-operated group has been offered Blocks 12/27c; 17/5; 18/1 and 18/2 in the Inner Moray Firth Basin. Block 12/27c contains a substantial prospect located up-dip of a gas column intersected by well 12/27-1 in Middle Jurassic Beatrice Formation sandstones. The well flowed 9.5 mmscfg per day on a 40/64" choke from a 14m interval at 1,109m MD. The tested gas was almost pure methane (98.6%) but the reservoir was oil stained. Corallian interprets the structure drilled by 12/27-1 to have originally been oil charged and to have spilled up-dip to a series of tilted fault block closures on the Central Ridge culminating in a gas cap which has a DHI amplitude anomaly.

The Dunrobin Prospect covers 33.6 square kilometres and Corallian has estimated a Pmean prospective resource of 187 mmboe. The smaller Golspie Prospect, a separate fault block also up-dip of 12/27-1 covers 4.2 square kilometres and Corallian has estimated a Pmean prospective resource potential of 21.5 mmboe. The primary reservoir intervals for both prospects are sandstones of the Beatrice Formation and Dunrobin Bay Group as intersected in well 12/27-1. Reservoir quality is good to excellent. Corallian estimates the geological chance of success for the Dunrobin Prospect to be 34%, and the Golspie Prospect to be 43%, with the main risks being cross-fault seal and oil preservation at shallow depth.

Within Phase A of the Innovate licence the joint venture must complete 3D seismic reprocessing and make a decision to drill or drop the licence within 4 years.


English Channel (Baron 8%)

The Corallian-operated group has been offered Blocks 98/11b and 98/12 in the English Channel. The blocks are contiguous with acreage currently held by the P1918 Joint Venture: Block 98/11a (containing the Colter South discovery), PEDL330 and PEDL345 (containing the Purbeck Prospect).

Block 98/12 contains the eastern portion of the Colter South discovery, a rotated fault block with Sherwood Sandstone reservoir which was drilled in a downdip position by well 98/11-1 in 1983, and recently confirmed as a discovery by the Corallian operated 98/11a-6 Colter appraisal well. This well encountered 9 metres of gross oil pay in Sherwood Sandstone and Corallian has given the structure a Pmean estimate of 16 mmboe prospective resource, 30% of which is located on Block 98/12. Block 98/12 also contains the Ballard Point East Prospect which is a structural high mapped at Penarth level, along strike from the Ballard Point discovery. The prospective reservoir is Sherwood Sandstone.

Block 98/11b contains the Ballard Point discovery which was drilled by Gas Council Exploration in 1984. Well 98/11-2 flowed 9.6 million standard cubic feet of gas per day with 170 barrels of 45oAPI condensate from Triassic Sherwood Sandstone. The appraisal well 98/11-4,4Z drilled in 1987 tested oil at low rates (c.180 bopd equivalent) from just above the oil-water contact in the Sherwood, and gas at low rates (25,000 - 50,000 scfg/d) also from the Sherwood. This well appears to share the same fluid contacts as 98/11-2. Block 98/11b also contains the offshore portion of the Purbeck Prospect which comprises the Purbeck anticline, the northern flank of which anticline was drilled by the BP Southard Quarry well in 1989. This well encountered hydrocarbon columns in the Cornbrash, similar to those encountered at the recently drilled 98/11a-6Z sidetrack, and in the Lower Jurassic Bridport and Triassic Sherwood Sandstones. The hydrocarbon phase is uncertain due to mud losses while drilling. The southern flank of the anticline contains a bright amplitude anomaly at Bridport Sand level.

In the southern portion of 98/11b and 98/12 three leads have also been identified on sparse 2D seismic data, south of the main inversion zone. These leads have targets at both Bridport and Sherwood levels.

Within Phase A of the Innovate licence the joint venture must make a decision to enter into Phase B for new seismic acquisition or drill or drop the licence within 3 years.


Malcolm Butler, Executive Chairman of Baron, commented:

"We are very pleased with the success of our 31st Round applications, which not only lock in protective acreage surrounding our existing prospects and discoveries but also bring in an exciting new exploration area in the Inner Moray Firth.


We look forward to finalising the awards and beginning work on these blocks."


Competent Person's Statement

Pursuant to the requirements of the AIM Rules for Companies, the technical information and resource reporting contained in this announcement has been reviewed by Dr Malcolm Butler BSc, PhD, FGS, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Dr Butler has more than 45 years' experience as a petroleum geologist.  He has compiled, read and approved the technical disclosure in this regulatory announcement.  The technical disclosure in this announcement complies with the Society of Petroleum Engineers standard.


For further information, please contact:

Baron Oil Plc

+44 (0)20 7117 2849

Malcolm Butler, Executive Chairman

Andy Yeo, Managing Director

SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP

+44 (0)20 3470 0470

Nominated Adviser and Joint Broker

Lindsay Mair, Richard Hail, Richard Redmayne


This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact [email protected] or visit www.rns.com.

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