Talos Energy of Houston is making aggressive moves to buy up exploration blocks in the Gulf of Mexico. A block represents 75,000 acres on the ocean floor. In August, Talos said it would pay $5.3 million for 14 such blocks. Eight of them are shallow water blocks and six are deep water.

The sites are leased by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, a subgroup within the United States Department of the Interior.

Talos Energy President and Chief Executive Officer Timothy Duncan said these lease purchases are an attempt to expand his company’s inventory in locations near its production facilities. It’s all part of an extremely ambitious effort to ramp up the activities of this young company founded in 2012.

Since then, Talos Energy has become a publicly traded entity appearing as TALO on the New York Stock Exchange. Among other factors, it was the recent Talos merger with Stone Energy company of Louisiana that helped leverage its birth into public company status.

Talso also recently acquired Whistler Energy II for $52 million. As part of the deal, Talos negotiated the release of $77 million in cash collateral that secured Whistler surety bonds. Talos Energy gained $33 million and the seller took $46 million. But Talos also benefited from an $7 million cash balance at Whistler which was available for use. All in all, the net cash benefit to Talos rounded out at $14 million.

Whistler’s assets also included daily production of 1,900 barrels per day.

In addition to bolstering its cash and infrastructure profile with the Big Stone and Whistler deals, Talos Energy has been moving forward with drilling projects in Gulf of Mexico. One of the most exciting is the ZAMA-1 well dropped in Mexican territorial waters last year. The project was handles in cooperation with Pemex and two other partners.

The ZAMA well appears to be an extremely significant find. It may hold as much as two billion barrels of oil equivalent. Talos Energy recently entered into an agreement with Mexican officials to drill in the block adjacent to ZAMA where there is a high likelihood more oil reserves will be found.

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