Petro Matad appoints Ex-Eni executive Michael Buck as CEO

Max Chuard

Mongolia-focused oil exploration company Petro Matad Limited, said it has appointed Mr. Michael Buck as its new chief executive officer. He will be appointed to the Board as soon as AIM regulatory processes have been completed and a further announcement in that regard will be made at that time.

Michael Buck is an explorer by background and spent the first 20 years of his career with UK independent E&P company LASMO PLC, rising from graduate Geophysicist to Exploration Manager and on to Managing Director of Overseas Business Units. Following the acquisition of LASMO PLC by Eni S.p.A. (“Eni”), he was appointed Managing Director of Eni’s Pakistan Geographic Unit and thereafter of the Iran Geographic Unit.

He joined Salamander Energy PLC (“Salamander”) in August 2006, was appointed to the Board as an Executive Director in October 2006 and was Salamander’s Chief Operating Officer until March 2015 when Salamander was acquired by Ophir Energy plc (“Ophir”). He was retained by Ophir to help with the integration of the two businesses.

Following his departure from Ophir, Mike established a new upstream E&P entity focused on S E Asia. Michael Buck has 38 years of experience in the international oil and gas industry.

Further to its announcement of 19 September 2017, the Company notifies that Mr. Ridvan Karpuz has stepped down from the Board. He will continue as a technical consultant to the Company and assist in the handover to Michael Buck.

Enkhmaa Davaanyam, Chairperson of Petro Matad, said “The Company is fortunate that a candidate of Mike Buck’s calibre and experience has agreed to join Petro Matad as CEO to guide the Company through the exciting and challenging times ahead. On behalf of the Board of Directors and Petro Matad staff, I welcome Mike to the Company.”

About Petro Matad

Petro Matad is a group focussed on oil exploration, as well as potential future development and production in Mongolia. The Group’s assets consist of Production Sharing Contracts (PSCs) over the following exploration blocks:
•Matad Block XX, with an area of 10,340km2 in the far eastern part of Mongolia near the Chinese border
•Bogd Block IV and Ongi Block V, adjacent to each other in west central Mongolia totalling approximately 50,000km2

While the Group possess the largest fully licensed accumulative acreage in Mongolia, as compared to other operators, it will continue to seek, as appropriate, new opportunities in the oil sector of Mongolia and to participate in the exploration and development of those areas.

Since its inception, Petro Matad has successfully raised funds through several fundraising to fund its exploration activities over the three blocks. On 1 May 2008, Petro Matad Limited was admitted to the London Stock Exchange, Alternative Investment Market making the Company the first substantially Mongolian owned company to be listed on an international stock exchange. The Company’s largest shareholder is Petrovis, the largest importer and distributor of petroleum products in Mongolia. In 2009 and later again in 2010, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development invested a total of USD13million in Petro Matad. In 2015, BG Group farmed into Blocks IV and V and obtained 78% working interest in return for fully funding a USD28million work program, an upfront cash payment USD2.75million and payment of a further USD1.8million over thirty-six months (USD50,000 per month). However, following Shell’s acquisition of BG Group, Shell undertook a worldwide portfolio review and decided to exit Mongolia. Shell has agreed to pay total consideration of USD15,005,003 to Petro Matad as an exit fee, the proceeds of which will enable Petro Matad to continue with planned work programs including exploration drilling. Consequently, the working interest held by BG Group will now revert to Petro Matad. Petro Matad will hold 100% working interest and continue as the operator of all three blocks. With the withdrawal from Mongolia by Shell, Petro Matad will continue to evaluate the potential for initiating a further farmout process to attract a qualified partner to share the exploration risk and assist in accelerating the exploration of our vast and highly attractive acreage.