Nextraction announces signing of letter of intent to enter in to Joint VentureMarch 27, 2009
Nextraction Energy Corporation (TSX-V: NE) ("the "Company") announced that on March 25, 2009 its wholly-owned subsidiary, Nextraction Energy (US) Inc. ("Nextraction"), signed a letter of intent to enter into a Farmout and Joint Venture Agreement with Vinland Energy Eastern, LLC (London, Kentucky) ("Vinland") for the development of approximately 56,700 net/70,130 gross acres located in Whitley and McCreary Counties, Kentucky. Pursuant to the terms of the agreement, Nextraction has agreed to test the Devonian black shales in this emerging play of the Appalachian Basin. The agreement has three phases of development, described as follows:
Pilot Project Phase - Nextraction has agreed to drill one core well and, in the event that the analytical data from this core is positive, four exploratory wells in 2009. Nextraction will earn 100% of the well spacing units until payout and Vinland will have the option to convert its retained overriding royalty to a proportionately reduced twenty five percent (25%) working interest after payout of the core and four test wells.
Secondary Development Phase - Nextraction may elect to continue development of the project by drilling an additional twenty five (25) wells prior to February 28, 2011. Vinland will have the option to either (a) participate as a net thirty five percent (35%) working interest partner, proportionately reduced, or (b) retain an overriding royalty with the option to convert the retained override to a proportionately reduced thirty five percent (35%) working interest after payout.
Continued Development Phase - Upon completion of the Secondary Development Phase, Nextraction and Vinland shall each have the election, but not the obligation, to continue development on a 50/50 basis with a well by well "in-or-out" provision for any party declining to participate in the drilling. However, Nextraction will have the obligation to drill at least one well in the first two years after completion of the Secondary Development Phase or forfeit one half of its lease position for lands not held by production. A failure to drill over a five year period will result in Nextraction forfeiting all of its remaining leasehold position not held by production.
Pursuant to a Joint Operating Agreement to be entered between the parties, Vinland will be the contract operator for the project, whereby expenses will be shared among Vinland and Nextraction according to its proportionate interest in each well. Vanguard Natural Resources, LLC (Houston, TX) ("Vanguard") is currently a forty percent (40%) leasehold interest owner in approximately 13,000 acres of the 70,130 involved in the Nextraction/Vinland agreement. In the event wells are proposed on the leasehold partially owned by Vanguard, it will have the option to participate in the development pursuant to the terms of an existing joint venture agreement between Vinland and Vanguard.
Nextraction has also acquired oil and gas leases representing 588.23 net and gross acres in the project area.
Nextraction plans to budget $120,000 for the coring project of the first well. In the event the analytical data from the core is positive, the Company anticipates spending another $1-$2.2 million in order to complete its drilling program for 2009.
The play will focus on multi zone gas production from the conventional fractured Big Lime formation at depths of 1,000-1,200 feet and the horizontal non-conventional Chattanooga formation black shale at depths of 1,800-3,000 feet. The Kentucky Geological Survey records indicate the Big Lime is a producing formation with hundreds of wells resulting in cumulative production volumes averaging 100-500 million cubic feet of gas (Mmcfg) per well. Over 125 vertical wells have been drilled to the Chattanooga shale in the project area with cumulative production ranging as high as 395 million cubic of gas (Mmcfg). The New Albany and Huron shales, which are the stratigraphic equivalent of the Chattanooga Shale, are being drilled horizontally elsewhere in Kentucky, and the Chattanooga Shale is currently being developed nearby in Tennessee. Reported volumes of production from the horizontal shales range between 200 thousand cubic feet of gas per day (mcfgd) and 1.2 million cubic feet of gas per day (Mmcfgd) per well, according to press releases from CNX Gas Corporation, Equitable Resources Inc. and Daugherty Petroleum Corporation. The Company estimates that as of today's date, the potential for 875-1,800 wells exists in the project area.
To the northeast of the project area, a horizontal New Albany shale gas play is being developed in the Big Sandy field. The Big Sandy field has produced 2.5 trillion cubic feet of gas (tcfg) (Atlas of Major Appalachian Gas Plays), averaging 368 million cubic feet of gas (Mmcfg) per well. The horizontal program is projected to triple ultimate recovery per well, according to the Kentucky Geological Survey. Vinland has participated in five Chattanooga shale horizontal well re-entries near the project area which have initial flow rates of 100- 300 thousand cubic feet of gas per day (mcfgpd). CNX Gas Corporation has reported through press releases that it has drilled four horizontal wells in the Chattanooga Shale approximately forty (40) miles south of the project area in the state of Tennessee and also reports flow rates of 200-300 thousand cubic feet of gas per day (mcfgpd) from those wells.
The entering into of the agreement with Vinland is in following with the Company's corporate strategy for building a balanced portfolio. The southeastern Kentucky play has established production in two zones that have yet to receive the application of horizontal drilling and new completion techniques. The project area's pipeline infrastructure is well developed and gas is sold at or above the NYMEX pricing index.
Nextraction Energy Corporation is a Canadian junior oil and gas company which changed its business to the oil and gas industry in November 2008. The Company is located in Vancouver, BC, Canada and has assets in the Pinedale area of western Wyoming, which it also plans to be drilling in 2009.
Vinland is a privately held oil and gas company operating in Kentucky and Tennessee.
Vanguard is a publicly traded limited liability company focused on the acquisition and development of mature long-lived natural gas and oil properties in the United States. Vanguard's properties are located in the southern portion of the Appalachian Basin in Kentucky and Tennessee, the Permian Basin in West Texas and New Mexico, and South Texas. Vinland, together with certain of its affiliates and related persons, is Vanguard's largest unitholder. Vinland's senior management team has an average of approximately 25 years of experience operating in the Appalachian Basin and has operated Vanguard's assets on behalf of its predecessor in southeast Kentucky and northeast Tennessee since 1999.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS DISCLAIMER
Certain statements in this document may contain "forward-looking statements" or "forward-looking information" within the meaning of applicable securities legislation. Such forward-looking statements or information include, without limitation, statements or information about the anticipated benefits resulting from the Farmout and Joint Venture Agreement, our business strategy and goals, our future capital and other expenditures and requirements, reserves and resources estimates, our drilling plans, seismic activity, production levels and the sources of growth thereof, project development schedules and results, results of exploration activities and dates by which certain areas may be developed or may come on-stream, our future financing and capital activities, contingent liabilities and environmental matters. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements or information can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes" or variations of such words and phrases or words and phrases that state or indicate that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will" be taken, occur or be achieved. With respect to forward-looking statements and information contained herein, we have made numerous assumptions including, among other things, the accuracy of recovery rates and production in surrounding areas. Although our management believes that the assumptions made and the expectations represented by such statements or information are reasonable, there can be no assurance that a forward-looking statement or information herein will prove to be accurate. Forward-looking statements and information by their nature are based on assumptions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, amongst others, general economic conditions, industry conditions, volatility of commodity prices, stock market volatility, imprecision of reserve estimates, environmental risks, the Company's ability to obtain sufficient capital from internal and external sources to fund its proposed drilling program, misjudgments in the course of preparing forward-looking statements or information and those risk factors identified in the Company's Management Information Circular dated September 11, 2008. Should one or more of these risks and uncertainties materialize, or should the underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements and information.
Although we have attempted to identify factors that may cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements and information, there may be other factors that cause actual results, performances, achievements or events to not be as anticipated, estimated or intended. Also, many of the factors are beyond our control. As actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements and information, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements or information. The forward-looking statements and information contained in this press release are made as of the date of this press release and, except as may be required by law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements or information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. All forward-looking statements and information made herein are qualified by this cautionary statement. Interested parties are invited to have an independent review of the projections contained herein for concurrence and accuracy.
The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
For further information, please contact:
Mark S. Dolar
Nextraction Energy Corp.
550 Burrard St, Suite 300
Vancouver, BC, Canada V6C 2B5
Cell (801) 502-5085