Noble Secures 24 Deepwater Blocks in GOM Lease Sale

Noble Energy was the apparent high bidder on 24 deepwater lease blocks in the Central Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 208. Of the high bids, Noble Energy bid alone on 21 and joined with partners on the remaining three with an average working interest for the partnered bids of 77.5 percent.

Noble Energy's share of the lease bonuses on its apparent high bids totaled approximately $55 million. The 24 high bid blocks cover in excess of 119,000 net acres in water depths up to 8,300 feet. Prior to today's lease sale, Noble Energy held an interest in 93 deepwater Gulf of Mexico leases, representing approximately 315,000 net acres.

All high bids are subject to approval by the Minerals Management Service (MMS) of the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Charles D. Davidson, the company's Chairman, President, and CEO, said, "We are very pleased with the results of yesterday's lease sale, where we continued to increase our exposure to significant resource opportunities in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The addition of these blocks, which include our top three targets for the sale, fits in nicely with Noble Energy's growing inventory of exploration opportunities."