This week, independent exploration and production companies are out strutting their stuff in San Francisco, as they seek to woo analysts, investors, and portfolio managers at the Oil & Gas Investor Symposium. It's a fine opportunity to put the spotlight on promising oil plays that don't otherwise receive much attention.
Having more or less ignored Mariner Energy
Even in 2007, the deepwater segment punched above its weight, with 23% of total production. Since that time, a string of discoveries has really illuminated Mariner's significant deepwater potential.
In 2008, Mariner drilled eight deepwater wells with a 63% success rate. Reserves in that segment jumped 62% to 199 billion cubic feet equivalent, or 20% of total proved reserves. The Geauxpher discovery, made with partner Apache
2009 has brought success at the Anadarko Petroleum
Bear in mind that Mariner didn't just stumble into the deepwater dance. The firm's been operating in this area since 1996, and had participated in more than 84 deepwater wells by the publication of the 2008 annual report.
Rather than being a Johhny-come-lately, Mariner appears to be coming into its own. Exploration is the key value driver here, so make sure your personal risk tolerance can bear the occasional dry hole disappointment before even thinking about scooping up this stock.
Motley Fool CAPS players hold Mariner in moderate regard, rating the firm three stars out of a possible five. Your author is still smarting from a lazy underperform call placed back in March. Make your own call on the offshore explorer right here.
Fool contributor Toby Shute doesn't have a position in any company mentioned. Check out his profile in CAPS, where he recently ranked 71st out of more than 140,000 players. You can also follow his articles using Twitter or RSS. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.