Talos Energy Inc. was named as the apparent high bidder on 13 deepwater blocks comprising approximately 48,000 net acres in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico (GoM) following the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s Lease Sale 261 held on Dec. 20.

Leases for all blocks remain subject to formal awards by the Department of the Interior, Talos said in a Dec. 22 press release.

Separately, Talos said on Dec. 22 that it had executed lease exchange agreements with BP Exploration & Production Inc., Chevron U.S.A. and Hess Corp. under which the parties are consolidating acreage across 15 blocks in the deepwater Green Canyon area of the GoM.

Talos said the consolidation provides the companies with the ability to execute prospective drilling opportunities more efficiently upon developing the contributed acreage, which includes several identified prospects. Talos's participation in these blocks is expected to be between 15% and 20%.

Talos President and CEO Timothy S. Duncan said the company achieved broad success through a high level of activity in Lease Sale 261, “adding acreage and prospects to Talos' robust portfolio.”

“The proximity of these prospects to our existing assets, including Ram Powell, Pompano, Prince, and Brutus facilities, bolsters our infrastructure-led, near-field strategy in the Gulf of Mexico while providing opportunities to lower the overall carbon intensity of our assets over time,” Duncan said.

Duncan said that consolidating the lease positions could lead to future growth opportunities and “validates the potential of the acreage we are contributing and could lead to the efficient development of reliable, responsible energy.”

Combined with the company’s recently announced Repsol joint venture, Talos’ efforts have increased the company’s inventory depth and laid the groundwork for future E&P opportunities, Duncan said.