SAN ANTONIO, Sept. 01, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Ecoark Holdings, Inc. [Nasdaq: ZEST], which holds approximately 70% of the outstanding equity of and is under common management with Fortium Holdings Corp. (“Fortium”) [OTC: FRTM], today announced that Fortium’s indirect wholly-owned subsidiary, White River Operating LLC (“White River”), has successfully completed a workover project as the operator of record on the Deshotel 24H 001 Well (“Deshotel Well”) in the Bayou Jack North Field in Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana. The Deshotel Well was originally drilled and completed by White River in early 2021 as an open-hole lateral Austin Chalk oil and gas well (see press release here). Production had been inhibited on the Deshotel Well due to a build-up of paraffin in the well’s vertical casing and tubing. White River performed a workover procedure on the Deshotel Well, which involved a heavy water flush into the wellbore to remove a substantial paraffin blockage and also installed artificial lift to increase the production rate. The initial results of the workover procedure have greatly exceeded expectations with over a 500% increase in current production rates being realized at the Deshotel Well. As the well has now returned online, numerous pumper readings have shown initial production rates as high as 30 barrels of oil produced per hour, although typically initial production rates decline over time.
Randy May, Ecoark’s Chief Executive Officer, who is also Fortium’s Executive Chairman, stated, “We are ecstatic with not only the results of this workover procedure but also the return on investment as this was an extremely low-cost procedure performed by our own vertically integrated oil and gas operation. In addition to our plan to continue drilling new oil wells, we will continue to monitor our existing portfolio of wells for opportunities to perform workover procedures to increase oil production in an efficient manner.”
White River’s Field Operations Superintendent, Larry Parker, stated, “My team and I analyzed the paraffin issue at the Deshotel Well and correctly determined that removing the well’s packer, adding chemicals to the well’s casing, and performing the heavy water flush and artificial lift addition would be the optimal procedure to remove the blockage in the well’s tubing. We’re very happy with the well’s post-procedure production and oil cut and are looking forward to aggressively drilling out our leasehold now that White River has been acquired by Fortium.”
As previously announced, White River is currently conducting a drilling project at the Harry O’Neal 20-9 No. 1 well and recently committed to acquiring two additional drilling rigs to add to its equipment portfolio (see press release here). White River will have both the equipment and the new enhanced team, which will be capable of conducting completely in-house drilling projects up to 30,000’ horizontally in formations on our leases, including the Austin Chalk and Tuscaloosa Marine Shale.
Furthermore, White River was recently sold by Ecoark to Fortium in exchange for $30,000,000 of non-voting convertible preferred stock. Ecoark plans to spin off the underlying Fortium common stock to its shareholders of a future to be determined record date, subject to compliance with applicable securities laws (see press release here
About Ecoark Holdings, Inc.
Founded in 2011, Ecoark is a diversified holding company. Ecoark owns or controls four principal subsidiaries: Fortium, Banner Midstream Corp (“Banner”), Zest Labs, Inc. (“Zest Labs”) and approximately 89% of Agora Digital Holdings Inc. (“Agora”). Fortium’s principal subsidiary is White River. White River is engaged in oil and gas exploration, production, and drilling operations on over 30,000 cumulative acres of active mineral leases in Louisiana and Mississippi. Banner provides trucking and other services for oil and gas services companies. Zest Labs, offers the Zest Fresh™ solution, a breakthrough approach to quality management of fresh food, is specifically designed to help substantially reduce the $161 billion amount of food loss the U.S. experiences each year. Agora engaged in the mining of Bitcoin prior to the recent industry sell-off through its subsidiary, Bitstream Mining LLC.
ZEST FRESH™ and Zest Labs™ are trademarks of Zest Labs, Inc.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 including statements regarding Fortium’s drilling plans, acquisition of drilling rigs and Ecoark’s planned spin-off These forward-looking statements generally include statements that are predictive in nature and depend upon or refer to future events or conditions, and include words such as “believes,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “projects,” “estimates,” “expects,” “intends,” “strategy,” “future,” “opportunity,” “may,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “potential,” or similar expressions. Statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on current beliefs and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and Fortium does not undertake any obligation to update any of these statements publicly in light of new information or future events. Actual results could differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statement as a result of various factors. In addition to risks relating to the continuation of high oil prices, oil and gas drilling risks including dry hole risks and production issues like White River experienced with the Deshotel Well, regulatory pressures, and regulatory delays with Ecoark’s planned spin-off, investors should review risk factors, that could affect Fortium’s oil and gas business and financial results which are included in Ecoark’s Form 10-K for the year ended March 31, 2022 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Marc Silverberg, ICR
Brian McBride, Ecoark
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