Contango Oil & Gas Company (NYSE Amex:MCF) announced today that it has drilled a successful exploratory well at its Swimmy prospect located Offshore Gulf of Mexico on Vermilion block 170. The Company’s independent third party engineer estimates this well to have 8/8ths proved reserves of 48 billion cubic feet of natural gas and 1.2 million barrels of condensate, approximately 55 billion cubic feet equivalent (“Bcfe”), or 37.5 Bcfe net to Contango’s 68% net revenue interest. Production is expected to begin this fall at an estimated rate of 15 million cubic feet equivalent per day (“Mmcfed”), net to Contango. Estimated net costs to Contango, to acquire, drill, complete, and bring this well to full production status are approximately $26.5 million. Kenneth R. Peak, Contango’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, “We expect this discovery will replace our production for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2011. Production for the six months ended December 31, 2010 was approximately 18.7 Bcfe. As a result of this well, our all-in estimated offshore Gulf of Mexico finding and development (F&D) costs for fiscal year 2011 are now estimated to be about $1.20/mcfe. The costs used in this calculation include $8.7 million for a potential second well at Vermilion 170; $9.5 million from our earlier dry hole at Galveston Area 277 (His Dudeness); and the $26.5 million outlined above, all net to Contango.” Mr. Peak continued, “Currently, our two Eloise wells are both shut-in for remedial work. Prior to being shut-in, they were producing at a combined rate of 5.0 Mmcfed, net to Contango. Our plan is to recomplete our Eloise South well uphole in the CibOp section as our Dutch #5 well. This recompletion is estimated to cost approximately $6 million, with an estimated initial production rate of approximately 8.5 Mmcfed, both net to Contango. Our Eloise North well recently sanded up and we are currently attempting to repair the well to restore production. If we are unsuccessful, our plan is to recomplete the well uphole in an upper Rob-L section at a net cost of approximately $0.5 million and an estimated initial production rate of approximately 1.5 Mmcfed, both net to Contango. We plan to have both of these wells on-line by mid-summer.”
In trading on Monday, shares of Contango Oil & Gas Co. crossed below their last reported book value — defined as common shareholder equity per share — of $30.68, changing hands as low as $30.63 per share.