PetroShale Inc.

September 27, 2012 09:00 ET

PetroShale Announces Successful Mondak Test Results in the Upper Bakken Shale

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Sept. 27, 2012) - PetroShale Inc. ("PetroShale") (TSX VENTURE:PSH) is pleased to announce initial results from drilling activities in its Mondak field.


  • PetroShale, in partnership with operator Slawson Exploration Company, Inc. ("Slawson Exploration"), has successfully completed their initial appraisal of the 40,000 acre Mondak shale play with four stimulated horizontal test wells in the Upper Bakken Shale. Two more wells have been drilled and are awaiting flow back or completion. PetroShale owns a 10% working interest ("WI") in the Mondak area of mutual interest ("AMI").
  • Based upon the results of these test wells, PetroShale and Slawson will start a two rig, two wells per month program immediately, increasing to three rigs in 2013.
  • Early type curves on the preferred completion method to date indicate estimated ultimate recoveries ("EUR") analogous to the un-stimulated wells Slawson drilled in 1994 and 2007. Those wells average 730,000 BO EUR.
  • Each well has been completed with different techniques. The preferred completion formula to date, used in the well called "Culverin," showed a 24 hour initial production rate ("IP") of 476 bopd flowing, and after 90 days Culverin is producing 200 bopd on pump.
  • Well costs have dropped from $6 million to below $5 million for stimulated, one-mile laterals.
  • Production is 98% oil with netbacks in the high $50s per barrel at $90 WTI. Netbacks will increase as additional infrastructure is completed.
  • Based on test well results and micro-seismic, Mondak has more than 200 drilling locations in the Upper Bakken Shale. In 2013 PetroShale and Slawson intend to test three more formations in addition to the shale: Red River, Mission Canyon (analogous to Oklahoma Mississippian play), and the Tyler.

Detailed Release:

PetroShale announces the initial results from its first four test wells in the Mondak field of the Williston Bakken operated by Slawson Exploration. These four horizontal test wells in the 40,000-acre Mondak play are noteworthy for having been drilled and completed in the Upper Bakken Shale itself. These wells bracket most of the play from East to West and North to South (30 mile spread) and are significant step-outs from the original five un-stimulated wells drilled by Slawson between 1994 and 2008 that originally defined the Mondak play.

Based on the successful test results of these initial wells, Slawson and PetroShale are moving to a three rig, three wells-per month program in the fourth quarter of 2012. PetroShale's capex for Mondak in 2013 is expected to be $25 million.

To date the results have been "tight hole" at Slawson's request due to an ongoing leasing program and the advanced techniques used in drilling and completing the actual Upper Bakken Shale rather than the middle Bakken. The Mondak AMI with Slawson has grown from 35,000 acres to 40,000 acres.

"Slawson has been the only Bakken operator with experience drilling the Upper Bakken Shale," says John Fair, CEO of PetroShale (US) Inc. "Slawson drilled 22 horizontal wells in the Billings Nose in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Then they drilled five un-stimulated wells adjacent to Mondak from 1994 to 2007, which had modest IPs but averaged 730,000 EURs, with at least two of those wells expected to exceed one million barrels. These new test wells in Mondak prove that the play is continuous. Now we are experimenting with completion techniques to increase the early stage deliverability."

Recently, Fidelity has begun drilling the shale within the Mondak AMI and other important operators are now aware of the opportunity and assembling land positions within the Upper Bakken Shale trend.

Fair added: "With these first five wells we have experimented with completion techniques and micro-seismic data to hone in on the most efficient completion formula. The history of the Bakken tells us that completion techniques and economics continue to improve - field by field and year over year."

Well Name WI% IP Rates (24 Hr BOPD)
Arrowhead 8.9 316 (on pump)
Dart 10.0 312 (on pump)
Culverin 10.0 476 (flowing rate)
Cleaver 10.0 296 (flowing rate)
Lasso 10.0 Flow back test underway
Pilum 10.0 Waiting on completion

"Recent micro seismic test results were very positive and gave us critical data to help fine-tune the completions. This data also supports our original estimate of being able to get three wells per section, and probably more," according to Fair.

Slawson is still working on reducing costs. "The first well cost $6 million and now we are under $5 million and still decreasing," says Todd Slawson, President of Slawson Exploration. "The shale wells in the Mondak area will never have flashy IPs but they exhibit very shallow decline curves, hence the high expected EURs and projected recycle ratios of 4.5:1 or greater. As we fine tune the completions we will continue to improve the IPs and economics," says Slawson.

"As we continue to work our way up the curve on our stimulation techniques we are also anxious to try an innovative idea for unstimulated wells, which we believe might offer the greatest ultimate recovery and even higher recycle ratios."

In the June 17, 2012 Petroleum News Bakken, Dr. Steve Sonnenburg, holder of the Charles Boettcher Distinguished Chair at the Colorado School of Mines, touted the Upper Bakken Shale saying, "90 to 95% of the oil has not migrated from the shale source rock intervals" and "they are world class source rocks. They currently average about 11% by weight organic carbon content."

Petrochemist and PetroShale board member Daniel Jarvie analyzed a recent core from the same Upper Bakken Shale trend "which indicated upwards of 30 million barrels of oil in place per section."

"In addition to the Upper Bakken Shale, Mondak is prospective in the Mission Canyon, Tyler, False Bakken, and Red River formations," says Craig Slawson, VP Slawson Exploration. "The Mondak play has more than 200 well locations."

About PetroShale:

PetroShale Inc. (TSX VENTURE:PSH) was formed in March 2012 under a plan of arrangement combining Mondak Petroleum Inc. and Algonquin Oil and Gas Limited. PetroShale partners with Slawson Exploration in the Williston Bakken. Slawson Exploration is the 6th largest oil producer in the Williston Bakken and the 7th largest private oil producer in America. Slawson Exploration has been operating in the Williston Basin for more than 35 years and it is known for its technical innovation and efficient operations. PetroShale's non-operating model and low overhead allows for extremely efficient conversion of Slawson Exploration operations into both reserve and EBITA growth.

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