On the 26 October 2012, Petrel acquired a 25% interest in Schuepbach Energy International LLC (SEI), a private US company which holds an 85% interest in two petroleum exploration licences in southern Spain. The licences, Tesorillo and Ruedalabola, cover 38,000 ha (94,000 acres). The 1956 well Almarchal -1 was drilled by the Spanish firm Valdebro and intersected a thick section of gas pay which upon testing flowed gas to surface. The well is located 3km from the North African Maghreb gas trunkline providing ready access to high priced European gas markets.
Almarchal-1 is the discovery well of what is likely a very large by-passed gas field. Drillstem tests and log analysis confirm 48m of proven gas pay from two Miocene Aljibe Formation sandstone intervals. A further 492m of probable gas pay is interpreted from logs but unconfirmed by testing.
The well is located on a seismically delineated thrust ramp anticline with closure area exceeding 70 km2. Multi-TCF gas-in-place is indicated. The 1957 Puerto de Ojen-1 well, located 15km to the east in Ruedalabola license, displayed similar gas shows to Almarchal-1 but could not be tested for mechanical reasons. It appears to be located on a separate large thrust feature.