US-based energy company Noble Energy has entered into an agreement to acquire ownership in 17 deepwater exploration leases in the Gulf of Mexico from BP Exploration & Production.
As per the agreement, the company will acquire a 50% working interest in 13 leases and an average 26% working interest in four leases, all of which are located in the Atwater Valley protraction area.
Noble Energy Gulf of Mexico, West Africa and Frontier senior vice-president Susan Cunningham said: "The deepwater Gulf of Mexico is one of Noble Energy's core areas and today we have expanded our opportunity set there through the successful capture of a number of attractive and sizeable prospects.
"We have multiple opportunities for substantial hydrocarbon discovery in the near-term, with the Katmai prospect results expected by our second quarter earnings call and the Bright prospect anticipated to be at total depth by the end of the third quarter.
"In addition to our exploration programmes, we are also currently drilling a second well at Dantzler as we progress multiple major projects toward first production."
Noble Energy is undertaking operations at the Bright prospect, in which it owns a 50% working interest with drilling process undergoing at Atwater Valley Block 362 in a water depth of approximately 5,600ft.
The initial well is expected to be drilled to a total depth of 13,000ft targeting multiple Upper and Middle Miocene reservoirs.
Noble Energy stated that it estimates gross unrisked resource of 90 million barrels to 350 million barrels of oil equivalent for the Bright prospect.
Further multiple follow-on exploration opportunities have been spotted at the Bright prospect on the newly acquired leases, the company added.
Noble Energy's core operations onshore are in the DJ Basin and Marcellus Shale, deepwater Gulf of Mexico, offshore Eastern Mediterranean and offshore West Africa.