Vastar Resources, Inc. has expanded its ownership interests and assumed the operational responsibilities in the Grand Isle 41, 43 and 47 and related West Delta producing fields on the Gulf of Mexico shelf. The acquisition, which went into effect on October 1, 1999, increases Vastar's ownership in the field complex to 37.5 percent from 25 percent. The additional interests were acquired from Conoco, Inc. "This acquisition continues our strategy of adding large properties with significant upside potential in our core areas," said Pamela Pierce, Vastar's vice president of Business Development. "This is a major field with complex geology, numerous producing horizons and large reserves. We have an excellent record of identifying new potential in major shelf properties." The Grand Isle / West Delta field, discovered in 1956, is the fourth-largest in the Gulf of Mexico based on cumulative gross production of over 555 million barrels of oil and 2.2 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. It includes 52 production platforms and 128 active completions in water depths of approximately 150 feet. In conjunction with its partners in the field, Vastar plans an aggressive exploitation program supported by 3D seismic data and extensive well control, with more than 120 potential new well locations and recompletions already identified to exploit the remaining reserve base. This program will begin immediately with the goals of increasing production while substantially reducing unit operating costs. Vastar anticipates realizing operating cost savings from consolidating shorebase operations with those of other Vastar facilities, and from reconfiguring platform quarters and field operations for greater efficiency. Vastar has completed or committed to the 1999 acquisition of interests in 18 producing properties for a total of approximately $75 million. Vastar has also divested interests in 18 properties believed by the company to offer limited development potential, for proceeds of approximately $68 million.