Venture Production Successfully Tests Grouse Appraisal Well

Venture Production has successfully drilled and tested well 21/19-12z to appraise the Grouse oil field. Grouse is located in Block 21/19 within the Greater Kittiwake Area ("GKA"), a central North Sea production hub operated and 50% owned by Venture.

Grouse was first discovered in 1981 by the 21/19-1a well. Subsequent work by Venture's subsurface team justified drilling a horizontal well to target better quality, thicker reservoir sands to the southwest of the discovery well. This well was spudded by the Noble TVL semi-submersible rig in late August and has now been successfully drilled and completed. Stabilized test rates in excess of pre-drill expectations were achieved. Rates of over 10,600 boepd gross were achieved through a 32/64" choke with a tubing head pressure of around 2,700 psi but this was limited by the throughput capacity of the test equipment.

The well will be suspended for use as a future producer and Grouse will be developed as a subsea tieback to the Kittiwake platform utilizing the Goosander production riser that was installed in 2006. Field development planning of a fast track development will commence immediately with first oil targeted for first quarter 2009.

Commenting on the news, Mike Wagstaff, Chief Executive said:

"This is another excellent drilling result on GKA, following on as it does from the development of Gadwall and the high performing Goosander field. With the imminent start-up of the new Kittiwake-Forties pipeline and the further potential production from additional Kittiwake satellites we can look forward to production from this hub extending well beyond 2015."