Written by Tom Bartos, CFO
ABARTA Energy rolled out its new identity at NAPE East in April at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh. In addition to being represented by staff on the exhibit floor, I was one of four speakers on an open panel discussion with other industry leaders from MarkWest, Talisman Energy and CONSOL Energy. A brief overview of our company follows.
ABARTA Energy, also known as ABARTA Oil & Gas Co, was founded in 1979 as a way to further diversify Taylor and Bitzer family interests, which at the time consisted of newspapers and Coca-Cola bottling plants. The company began by making relatively small energy investments each year with different oil and gas developers and remained a passive financial partner through the late 1980s.
In 1995, Jim Taylor, a third generation family shareholder, realizing the opportunity to increase shareholder value in the energy business, joined ABARTA Energy and assembled a management team to move the company to the next level. ABARTA Energy then became a more active partner with energy companies who shared its vision for growth. We developed in-house expertise in geology, engineering and operations so we could pursue a balance between continued growth through the drill bit and acquisitions. In 1997, ABARTA Energy completed its transition to an operating company by acquiring the joint venture assets from Meridian Exploration and by 2007, owned and operated over 1,000 wells in West Virginia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Texas.
Today we own an interest in over 2,100 oil and natural gas wells in eight states with over 50% of our revenues derived from participating in horizontal shale joint ventures in Bradford and Tioga Counties, Pennsylvania, and a Utica shale joint venture with Rex Energy in Ohio.
Headquartered in Pittsburgh, we have field offices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Kentucky where we operate over 750 conventional wells, 260 miles of pipelines along with multiple compression stations and sizeable sour gas and cryogenic plants.
ABARTA Energy strategically decided not to be a first mover in the Marcellus and subsequently participated in the play once it became derisked by other companies. In 2010, ABARTA Energy joint ventured with two established public companies on our acreage in Bradford and Tioga counties to develop the Marcellus. To date, ABARTA Energy has participated in over 115 horizontal shale wells in Pennsylvania and Ohio with our joint venture partners.
The company currently owns approximately 130,000 acres of oil and gas leases for unconventional development in the Marcellus, Utica, Burket and Rogersville shales. All the operated acreage in Pennsylvania is strategically positioned in a proven, stacked shale area with plans to continue developing our shale assets in the coming years.
Additionally, ABARTA Energy owns over 70,000 mostly contiguous and HBP (held by production) acreage in Kentucky containing highly prospective Rogersville shale development opportunities. The Rogersville shale is a liquids-rich resource play in the Cambrian section of the Rome Trough, at depths of 10-12,000 ft.