Valaris 8503 rig was used for Zama appraisal; Source: Talos Energy

Mexican conglomerate gets its hands on Talos’ partial stake in large oil field

Houston-based oil and gas player Talos Energy has wrapped up the sale of a partial stake in its subsidiary, Talos Mexico, which holds an interest in a giant oil field off Mexico. As a result, Zamajal, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Mexico-headquartered Grupo Carso conglomerate, has become the U.S. firm’s new partner.

Valaris 8503 rig was used for Zama appraisal; Source: Talos Energy

Talos Energy made arrangements with Grupo Carso, a company controlled by the family of the Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, in May 2023 to sell a 49.9% interest in its Mexican subsidiary, which has a 17.4% stake in the Pemex-operated Zama oil field. In an update on Wednesday, September 27, 2023, the U.S. player announced the closing of the sale of its partial interest in Talos Mexico to Zamajal.

As consideration for the sale, Talos received $74.85 million in cash at closing, with an additional $49.9 million due upon first production, for an aggregate price of $124.75 million. Talos Mexico is now owned 50.1% by Talos Energy and 49.9% by Carso, but the U.S. firm will remain the controlling shareholder of the company.

Timothy S. Duncan, Talos President and Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are excited to partner with Carso on Zama, one of the largest global shallow water oil discoveries in recent years. We expect that Talos’ strong operational track record combined with Carso’s critical local presence and global commercial reputation will enable us to further advance Zama toward FID and first production.”

Mexico’s Comisión Nacional de Hidrocarburos (CNH) greenlighted the Zama unit development plan in June 2023. Due to this, Talos is working with the Zama unit’s integrated project team to progress the front-end engineering and design and other workstreams required to reach a final investment decision.

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The U.S. player will co-lead the planning, drilling, construction, and completion of all Zama wells and the planning, execution, and delivery of Zama’s offshore infrastructure. Pemex and its partners plan to inject $4.5 billion of capital into this development.

The production from this field is expected in December 2025, reaching a peak production rate of 180,000 barrels per day of oil and 70.35 million ft3 per day of gas in 2029.