Can you tell us a little bit about Phoenix Global Resources’ history in South America and what sets you apart from competitors?
Phoenix was formed by the merger of Mercuria Energy Group’s South America holdings and Andes Energia. Both of the legacy companies have a long history in the country, with Petrolera el Trebol, one of Mercuria’s former subsidiaries having been in the country since 2001. As one of the few publicly traded independent oil and gas companies in Argentina, Phoenix’s focus is on bringing the strategies that drove the US shale boom to Argentina.
What have the biggest lessons you’ve learnt with regards to the growth and development of the Vaca Muerta been over the past year?
With the sheer size of the Vaca Muerta play in the Neuquina basin and with Phoenix having interest in the play from the southern part of the basin in Neuquen province to the northern part of the basin in Mendoza province and crossing from black oil to dry gas windows our biggest learning is that there isn’t any one size fits all solution to approaching the Vaca Muerta. Each individual area of the play comes with its own benefits and complications, as such tailoring your approach to each area is absolutely key.
What would you say are the biggest challenges the Vaca Muerta region is currently facing and how are you positioned to overcome these challenges?
The issues facing each region and phase in the Vaca Muerta are distinct and different. I don’t believe there is any one consistent issue that we see. In the north, services availability tends to be more of an issue, while in the south, particularly in the gas window, infrastructure and offtake bottlenecks are more problematic. Phoenix’s strength is in coming up with solutions that can address the individual needs of each area, whether that be working with other operators to reduce infrastructure constraints or working with the service companies to try and improve equipment availability.
Where do you see the biggest business development opportunities in the region in the next 5-10 years?
Given the large size and long-term of oil and gas concessions in Argentina, its difficult to make a small commitment on the upstream side in Argentina. But, as the current players begin to develop and de-risk their blocks and the “sweet-spots” in the unconventional space become more evident I think there will be opportunities for more partnership for new entrants into the play.
What topics are you most looking forward to discussing and debating at South America Energy Week?
I’m looking forward to hearing how other companies are addressing the issues that they are encountering in the development of unconventional resources in Argentina.
About Greg Easley
Greg is a Texas Licensed Professional Engineer with over ten years of experience in the oil and gas industry. Greg holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma and a Master’s Degree from the University of Houston, both in petroleum engineering. Greg began his career at ExxonMobil Development Company, working in the development of offshore international oilfields. He then moved to Marathon Oil where he worked in a variety of roles, from reservoir engineering onshore waterfloods to drilling wells in the unconventional Bakken formation of North Dakota. After Marathon, Greg worked at a multi-billion dollar family office where he evaluated new investment opportunities in the oil and gas sector and also managed their unconventional reserves and exploration portfolio. Subsequently, with Mercuria, Greg worked in reserve and reservoir management of their worldwide oil and gas portfolio and advised the company on any new acquisition or divestiture opportunities. With the merger of Mercuria and Andes Energia’s Argentine assets creating Phoenix Global Resources, Greg moved to his current position overseeing the engineering and reservoir aspects of Phoenix’s portfolio of assets.