Norway’s Statoil and TGS make Canadian announcements

Two big Norwegian companies recently announced their involvement with oil and gas exploration in Canada. Statoil confirmed that it has found between 100 million and 200 million barrels of recoverable oil in the Newfoundland offshore on Wednesday; and late last week, TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company (TGS) announced its acquisition of Calgary’s Arcis Seismic Solutions.

Statoil found the reserves in its Mizzen prospect, located in the Flemish Pass Basin – an area in which TGS has gathered seismic data –  and plans to continue its exploration of the area in 2012-13.

Multi-client 2D Survey in Labrador Sea, photo from TGS-NOPEC website (

The company is assessing the discovery to determine next steps, and has high hopes for the region. The video announcement is on The Telegram‘s website.

This is good news and an important step in Statoil’s journey to become a producing operator offshore Canada, said Atle Aadland, Vice President of Statoil Canada’s offshore operation.

The company also announced on Wednesday that it had entered into partnership with Canadian junior oil and gas company PetroFrontier Corp. to explore for shale gas in Australia.

Meanwhile, TGS acquired Arcis for an enterprise value of $73.5 million, based on net debt at the date of acquisition. According to the company press release,

As a wholly owned subsidiary of TGS, Arcis will continue to invest in multi-client projects in Canada, provide proprietary imaging services to external customers worldwide and will play a vital role in the processing of TGS’ own multi-client surveys. The Arcis acquisition will allow TGS to grow into the onshore multi-client and imaging business in Canada and other markets served by Arcis.

TGS was represented by Bryan Dempsey, its VP and General Counsel, and Brian Thiessen and Will Van Horne of Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP.

The acquired business will be consolidated as of July 1.

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