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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on May 14th, 2014, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 15, Issue 10 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 15, Issue 10

Santa Maria Energy pulls out of the Hyde Park merger

BY CAMILLIA LANHAM


EQUITY SEARCH
Santa Maria Energy moves from the public investment sector back into the private after pulling out of a potential merger with the Hyde Park Acquisition Corporation.
FILE PHOTO BY STEVE E. MILLER

After backing out of a merger with the Hyde Park Acquisition Corp., Santa Maria Energy is going back to its raising-private-equity ways.

Beth Marino, the energy company’s vice president of legal and corporate affairs, said the decision came after Santa Maria Energy believed Hyde Park wouldn’t have enough shareholder votes by the May 1 deadline. Marino said the company is now looking for $100 million to $125 million from private investors so they can begin construction on the well project approved by the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors last year.

Supervisors approved a well-expansion project for the company’s existing 26-well pilot project site located southwest of Orcutt. The site will end up with 136 wells pulling oil out of the Orcutt Oil Field through a process called cyclic steam injection, which essentially injects piping-hot steam into the earth intended to loosen up oil from its deposits in the Monterey Shale formation.

Marino explained that the supervisors’ approval was more tentative than anything, because the company is still working through gaining permit approvals from all the government agencies that need to give the project a go-ahead. She anticipates those permitting processes will be completed by the end of July.

Although the merger hiccup will delay the energy company’s construction plans, Marino said the project’s build-out-phase is still on track to be completed by the end of 2015.

“There will be a couple month delay, but we should have everything we need [financially] by the end of summer,” Marino said.