SOURCE: Marathon Oil Corporation

November 29, 2010 08:52 ET

Marathon Enters Eagle Ford Shale Play

Entry Builds on Company's Strategy Targeting Unconventional, Liquids-Rich Resource Plays

HOUSTON, TX--(Marketwire - November 29, 2010) - Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO) announced today that it has completed an agreement with Denali Oil & Gas for entry into the Eagle Ford Shale formation in Wilson and Atascosa counties, Texas. Under the terms of the agreement, Marathon will pay Denali $10 million as well as drill and complete four wells to earn approximately 17,000 net acres. Marathon also has the option to purchase Denali's remaining 58,000 net acres in the Eagle Ford Shale in these two counties. If Marathon executes this option, the full 75,000 net acres, including the initial payment, carried well interest and lease extensions, will cost approximately $2,800 per acre or a total of approximately $209 million. Marathon has until Oct. 31, 2011, to exercise this option.

In the event Marathon does not exercise its purchase option, Denali has the option to sell the remaining 58,000 acres to Marathon. The total cost under this option, including the initial payment, carried well interest and lease extensions, would be $92 million or approximately $1,225 per acre. Denali has until the later of Nov. 15, 2011, or 15 days after the completion of the final well, to exercise this option. This agreement covers all of Denali's acreage in Wilson and Atascosa counties but excludes Denali's 25,000 acres in Gonzales and Fayette counties.

"Since acquiring our first shale assets in the onshore U.S. market in 2006, Marathon has developed substantial expertise that we can apply to emerging plays like the Eagle Ford and create more opportunities for mid- and long-term profitable production growth," said Dave Roberts, the Company's executive vice president, Upstream. "This new entry reinforces a key element of our Upstream strategy of targeting unconventional, primarily liquids-rich resource plays providing low-risk, scalable growth."

Marathon is an integrated international energy company engaged in exploration and production; oil sands mining; integrated gas; and refining, marketing and transportation operations. Marathon, which is based in Houston, has principal operations in the United States, Angola, Canada, Equatorial Guinea, Indonesia, Iraqi Kurdistan Region, Libya, Norway, Poland and the United Kingdom. Marathon is the fourth largest United States-based integrated oil company and the nation's fifth largest refiner. For more information, please visit our website at

This news release contains forward-looking statements concerning the possibility of a significant new resource base. These forward-looking statements may be affected by a number of factors or are based on a number of assumptions including, among others, pricing, supply and demand for petroleum products, amount of capital available for exploration and development, regulatory constraints, timing of commencing production from new wells, drilling rig availability, unforeseen hazards such as weather conditions, acts of war or terrorist acts and the governmental or military response thereto, and other geological, operating and economic considerations. Closing of the agreement with Denali Oil & Gas is contingent upon satisfaction of customary closing conditions. In accordance with the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Marathon Oil Corporation has included in its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009, and in subsequent Forms 10-Q and 8-K, cautionary language identifying other important factors, though not necessarily all such factors, that could cause future outcomes to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.


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Source: Marathon Oil Corporation via Thomson Reuters ONE

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