Ecoark Holdings Forms Joint Drilling Venture With BlackBrush Oil & Gas

October 14, 2020

FRISCO, Texas, Oct. 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ecoark Holdings, Inc. ("Ecoark") (OTC: ZEST), announced that on October 9, 2020, it entered into a material definitive agreement with BlackBrush Oil & Gas, L.P. (“BlackBrush”) and an unnamed and unrelated third party for a joint drilling venture in the Austin Chalk formation.

Pursuant to the agreement, Ecoark’s subsidiary, White River SPV 3 LLC (“White River”) completed the all cash-purchase of two contiguous oil and gas mineral leases in an undisclosed area of the Austin Chalk formation, including shallow and deep drilling rights. The first lease was assigned to White River on September 4, 2020 for total consideration of $1.5 million, and the second lease was assigned to Ecoark on October 12, 2020 for total consideration of approximately $0.6 million.

Under the terms of the venture, Ecoark will fund 100% of the costs associated with the drilling and completion of a deep horizontal well in the Austin Chalk formation. BlackBrush will own a minority interest in the venture and will contribute its proprietary 3D seismic data on the leased properties, as well as provide operational expertise as an advisor on the program planning and drilling and completion of the well. Drilling and completion is anticipated in the December 2020 to January 2021 timeframe, and planning for the project is already underway.

“We are excited to be partnering with an established industry player the caliber of BlackBrush,” said Randy May, Chief Executive Officer of Ecoark. “BlackBrush has successfully drilled and participated in more than 500 wells in recent years, a majority of which have been horizontal and unconventional completions. This experience and expertise, combined with our strategic joint drilling venture structure, significantly de-risks our investment as we continue to advance Ecoark’s oil and gas development and growth strategy. We are excited to form this partnership with BlackBrush and look forward to expanding our relationship over time.”

“BlackBrush is looking forward to drilling the Joint Venture with Ecoark, and hopefully a future of drilling several Austin Chalk wells in the area and expanding to other formations in years to come,” said Mark Norville, President of BlackBrush.

About Ecoark Holdings, Inc.

Founded in 2011, Ecoark is a diversified holding company. The company has three wholly owned subsidiaries: Zest Labs, Inc. (“Zest Labs”), Banner Midstream Corp (“Banner Midstream”) and Trend Discovery Holdings, Inc. (“Trend Discovery”). Zest Labs, offers the Zest Fresh™ solution, a breakthrough approach to quality management of fresh food, is specifically designed to help substantially reduce the amount of food loss the U.S. experiences each year. Banner Midstream is engaged in oil and gas exploration, production, and drilling operations on over 20,000 cumulative acres of active mineral leases in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Banner Midstream also provides transportation and logistics services to oilfield transportation services contractors. Trend Discovery invests in a select number of early stage startups as part of the fund’s venture capital strategy; we are open-minded investors with a founder-first mentality.  

Forward-Looking StatementsThis press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements related to the joint venture with BlackBrush and anticipated drilling. The words "believe," "may," "estimate," "continue," "anticipate," "intend," "should," "plan," "could," "target," "potential," "is likely," "will," "expect" and similar expressions, as they relate to us, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management's current expectations and beliefs, as well as a number of assumptions concerning future events. Such forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, assumptions, and other important factors, many of which are outside management's control. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ from those in the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the general risks arising from oil well drilling including dry holes, fluctuations in oil and gas prices, and the possibility of adverse economic, business, and/or competitive factors, the need to complete a financing, and the condition of the capital markets in general and for microcap securities in particular. Additional risks and uncertainties are identified and discussed in Ecoark’s filings with the SEC, including our prospectus dated July 28, 2020. Any forward-looking statement made by us herein speaks only as of the date on which it is made. Additional factors or events that could cause our actual results to differ may emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict all of them. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as may be required by law.

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Replies to This Discussion

Interesting and surprising to see this happening.  ECOARK providing capital while Blackbrush adds technical expertise should make for some interesting meetings in both the office and on rig site.

Blackbrush has done some AC Hz Frac work in Texas with varying degrees of success if I remember the facts correctly.

I wonder where their drilling will take place. As well as who the unnamed third party is.

Definitely something to watch.

In the other Ecoark discussion here on the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale group page, Ecoark announced numerous wells acquired in LA and MS including 4 TMS wells.  Ecoark is not listed as an "operator" in LA but BlackBrush is and they have only 4 wells listed for the company.  I bet they are the 4 TMS wells Ecoark mentioned.

All Wells for selected Organization

Organization Id Organization Name
Cnt Well Serial Well Name Well Num Status Class Class Type API Number Org ID Field ID Permit Date Sec-Town-Rng Parish LUW Association
1 241623 AUS RA SUCC;DESHOTELS ETUX 20H 001 10 17009206340000 B5243 0800 02-JUL-10 020-02S-06E 05 GO TO LUW INFO 19850
2 243093 AUS RA SUAA;DESHOTELS ETAL 13H 001 10 17009206360000 B5243 0800 12-APR-11 013-02S-05E 05 GO TO LUW INFO 20146
3 244879 AUS RA SUGG;ROSEWOOD PLTN 21 H 001 10 17009206410000 B5243 0800 16-MAY-12 021-02S-06E 05 GO TO LUW INFO 20310
4 250723 AUS C RA SUA;BBJB PROP LLC 001 35 17079204600000 B5243 2593 19-JAN-18 023-01N-02E 40 GO TO LUW INFO 18206

Danny Deshotels has if I remember correctly around 3000 acres down around Bayou Jack on the Avoylles/St Landry Parish line. I have had dealings with him on several occasions dating back to around 2011 when Nelson Energy drilled one of these wells. He is a real character. My last dealings with him was on a project for Torrent in I think 2018. At that time he was under lease with Blackbrush for some of his property. The minerals on a large tract of his property were owned by Tex Moncrief at that time. That area was once one of Tex's hunting camps.


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