i3 opens data room to entice farm-in partners for UK offshore assets

UK independent i3 Energy has opened its data room to potential partner companies looking to farm into its UK North Sea assets ahead of an upcoming appraisal drilling program.

Borgland Dolphin, rig which drilled the Liberator and Serenity prospects; Source: Dolphin Drilling CEO Bjørnar Iversen

i3 Energy said on Thursday that the farm-out would fund a 2020 appraisal drilling program on its assets in 13/23c Block in the UK North Sea.

According to the company, the data room is now open and companies are actively evaluating the opportunity.

i3’s 13/23c Block holds the Serenity and Liberator oil finds drilled during the 2019 drilling campaign.

The company successfully completed the drilling of the Serenity 13/23c-10 well in late October 2019. Preliminary well results were consistent with i3 Energy’s pre-drill estimate of 197 mmbbls STOIIP for the entire Serenity closure within the company’s license area.

After plugging and abandonment of the Serenity well, the Borgland Dolphin semi-submersible rig mobilized to the Liberator field to drill the final well in the 2019 drilling program. i3 Energy hit oil on the Liberator 13/23c-11 well in late November of the same year.

The company also said on Thursday it was planning to list its shares on a secondary exchange.

i3 added that it was doing it for administrative reasons related to the company’s Loan Notes issued May 31, 2019, and explained that this was not being done in preparation for imminent equity placing as indicated by market rumors.

Offshore Energy Today Staff


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i3 Energy spuds new pilot well on Liberator field

UK independent i3 Energy has started drilling a new pilot well at its Liberator field in the outer Moray Firth, offshore UK.

Borgland Dolphin under mobilization to the current drilling operations for i3 Energy in August 2019. Source: Dolphin Drilling CEO Bjørnar Iversen

i3 said on Friday that this was the third and final well in a three-well campaign the company was carrying out with the Borgland Dolphin rig.

According to the company, the Liberator A2 pilot well will help i3 choose where to drill the future LP-02 production well.

The drilling of the final well follows the successful drilling, plugging, and abandonment of the Serenity well. The well struck oil in late October, confirming the strong commercial potential of the Serenity area.

Preliminary well results were consistent with i3 Energy’s pre-drill estimate of 197 MMbbls STOIIP for the entire Serenity closure within the company’s license area.

At the time, i3 has also agreed a rig contract extension and payment deferral with Dolphin Drilling. Namely, due to an unexpected on the Liberator field, and standby time incurred before drilling ops at Serenity, the company secured a right of first refusal on the Borgland Dolphin semi-submersible rig to January 31, 2020, so that the company can continue drilling operations at Serenity and Liberator.

Associated with this contract extension, Dolphin agreed to defer certain payments for drilling costs beyond September 30, 2019, which will be due to settle between January and August 2020.

i3 and Dolphin also entered into a strategic operational alliance for the use of Dolphin drilling rigs for i3 operations to August 2023, which would cover potential future appraisal and development drilling on Liberator and Serenity.

The company added in its statement on Friday that it agreed to issue £5 million of equity to the funders of its May 2019 junior loan notes at a price of 35p per share via private placement to provide flexibility to extend the drilling program.

The deadline by which i3 must enter a reserve-based lending facility or find alternative development financing has been extended from December 6 to April 30, 2020.

Majid Shafiq, CEO of i3 Energy, said: “We are excited to be drilling again at Liberator on the back of our success at Serenity.

“The A2 location has been selected as a low-risk target in close proximity to Liberator’s two well penetrations, giving us a high-level of confidence when tied into the recently reprocessed seismic that was used to select the Serenity discovery well location.

“The company is also very pleased with the additional funding we’ve received from our loan noteholders. Their continued material support shows a great level of confidence in i3’s assets and management team.”


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i3 Energy reaches total depth at Liberator well

UK oil and gas company i3 Energy has reached total depth at its operated Liberator well 13/23c-9 located in the UK North Sea. i3 is now preparing to obtain a vertical seismic profile in the well and to run a shear wave sonic log. 

Borgland Dolphin rig / Image by Stig Silden/Wikimedia – shared under CC BY-SA 3.0 license

i3 Energy hired the Borgland Dolphin rig last April for its undeveloped Liberator oil field and Serenity prospects in the North Sea. The rig completed its acceptance testing ahead of drilling operations in the UK North Sea in mid-August.

i3 Energy announced on Tuesday that the 13/23c-9 pilot well drilled by the Borgland Dolphin on its 100% owned Liberator field had reached total depth at 5818 ft True Vertical Depth subsea (TVDSS) in the Valhall formation.

The objectives of this pilot well are to enable a future development well to be positioned at an optimal location in the upper Captain sands channel in the south-eastern area of the Liberator field.

According to the company, preliminary petrophysical information obtained from the Measurement While Drilling (MWD) tools indicate that the targeted upper Captain sand has not been penetrated and is pinched out at the 13/23c-9 location.

The company said that the lower Captain sand is present in the well and is below the estimated oil water contact as expected.

On initial tie to the seismic data, the well appears to be located proximal to the main upper Captain channel fairway and further well data is required in order to interpret and locate the key reservoir upper Captain channel edge. As such, preparations are being made to obtain a vertical seismic profile (VSP) in the well and to also run a shear wave sonic log, after which 13/23c-9 will be plugged and abandoned as planned.

These data will be used to re-calibrate and update the existing seismic model such that options and plans for further operations at this location to meet the objective of locating a future development well in the south-east area of the field can be made.


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UK: i3 Energy confirms lenders support for Liberator development

Oil and gas company i3 Energy has received an indicative proposal and confirmed support from two UK lenders for a senior secured credit facility to fund its Liberator field development in the North Sea. 

As part of its efforts to secure funding for the next year’s development program, i3 Energy has been engaged in a formal process seeking to secure a $25 million credit facility to be used for the Phase I development of its 100% owned and operated Liberator development located in the UK sector of the North Sea.

The company informed on Monday it has received non-binding terms for a credit facility from UK-based lenders for the full $25 million facility, subject to final due diligence and the completion and approval of acceptable loan documentation. The company expects this to be completed during the course of December 2017.

As i3 moves to finalize loan documentation with its lenders before year-end, the company noted it would continue advancing other initiatives to fully fund its Liberator development, including the consideration of equity capital markets, joint venture partnerships, and private sources of funding.

However, there can be no certainty that the commitments will result in legally binding loan documentation, i3 added.

Graham Heath, i3’s CFO, commented: “The receipt of an indicative proposal and support for this $25 million credit facility from two experienced lenders who are very familiar with the North Sea is a strong endorsement. Their support for the Liberator project validates the asset’s technical and economic potential, and would provide critical funding towards the target to deliver first oil from the field in 2018.”

Located in License P.1987, 64 km north-east of Aberdeen, the Liberator field was discovered by Dana Petroleum in November 2013. The field is immediately adjacent to the Repsol Sinopec-operated Blake field and only 2 km from Blake’s producing drill center.

i3 submitted its Environmental Statement (ES) and development plan for the Liberator field to the UK authorities in early October. The development entails two single wells, one close to an existing manifold, part of the Blake field, and one approximately 2 km from the same manifold.

According to its operational update from early November, the company has already ordered two subsea trees and wellheads for May and August 2018 delivery.

Produced fluids from the two Liberator wells will co-mingle with fluids from wells drilled into the Blake field from the Blake manifold. These co-mingled fluids are processed by the Repsol Sinopec-operated and Bluewater-owned Bleo Holm FPSO vessel.

Drilling is expected to start in April 2018 and first oil is expected in the second half of 2018.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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