May 21 was a historic day for oil companies. It marked the first oil well being dropped into the Gulf of Mexico after the Mexican government opened its struggling oil industry to private companies. Prior to that, only the government owned Petroles Mexicanos could drill in Mexican territory. The government has been saying no to private company’s since 1938. However, in 2015, three companies won a bid to enter the market and the Mexican government opened their industry.
This first well being dropped was completed by a combination of oil businesses who decided to share the stake. These three businesses were London-based Premier Oil Plc, Houston’s Talos Energy LLC and Mexico’s Sierra Oil & Gas. It is an exploration well and early reports coming in look very promising at the existence of oil.
The well is called Zama-1 and can contain anywhere between 100 million barrels of oil to 500 million barrels of oil.
Each company involved has a different stake in the venture. Talos owns 35% stake, Sierra 40%, and Premier has 25%.
Tim Duncan is the owner of Talos energy and is proud of how far they have come. Duncan originally split off from another company and started Talos company with a $600 million equity, an asset in the Gulf of Mexico that was already producing 16,000 barrels of oil a day, and a workforce of 120 people.
WorkplaceDynamics named Talos Energy this year’s best small business workplace. Duncan says this wasn’t accomplished through offering emplyee perks like Friday happy hours or on-site day care. Talos Energy accomplished this because, though they may fall in the middle when it comes to immediate compensation, Talos puts a piece of the equity pie into every employee’s hands so that they directly benefit from the company’s success.
Duncan believes in a work environment where everybody is in it together. This increases moral and accountability. By putting something tangible in their hands, the employee works harder for the company.
Talos Energy will continue growing with the acquisition of Helix Energy Solutions for $620 million in February.