Exoma Energy (ASX: EXE) has strengthened its exploration team with Origin Energy (ASX: ORG) exploration director Robbert Willink and MBA Petroleum Consultants founding partner Doug Barrenger joining its board and senior management respectively.
Dr Willink, who joins as a non-executive director has 34 years of industry experience and was head of exploration at Origin from 2000 until 2011, where he oversaw numerous oil and gas discoveries in the Bass, Otway, Perth and Surat basins and expansion of its portfolio to include conventional and coal seam gas exploration interests in Queensland, South East Asia, Africa and New Zealand.
He is currently Adjunct Professor, School of Earth Sciences at the University of Queensland and director of his own training and advisory company, Investigative Exploration.
Prior to joining Origin, Willink held senior positions with Shell, Sagasco Resources Limited (which was taken over by Boral Limited in 1994, and eventually listed its energy assets as Origin Energy) and has lectured in petroleum geology at the National Centre for Petroleum Geology and Geophysics at Adelaide University.
Barrenger has been appointed Exoma's general manager exploration where his 35 years of experience in the petroleum industry will come to play.
He was most recently AWT International's technical director-geology and has ndertaken all facets of geological work, from wellsite and operations to prospect evaluation, risk analysis and basin analysis, venture representation and project management for both operated permit and new- ventures, in development and exploration.
"We are extremely pleased to welcome two very distinguished explorationists to Exoma," Exoma chairman Brian Barker said.
"Exoma has demonstrated that it has the in-house technical expertise to conduct an extensive drilling operation in support of technically complex exploration programs. We are now in a position to leverage that knowledge and skill to consolidate the longer-term appraisal of our existing tenements and to look for strategic opportunities to expand our portfolio that add to shareholder value in the shorter term.
"We have recently announced the strengthening of our commercial ties with CNOOC. Robb Willink and Doug Barrenger add to this initiative by providing the Company with significant additional capability to identify and assess new exploration targets in our existing acreage and in identifying new projects with high potential."
Howard Dewhirst has also flagged his retirement as a director of the company at its Annual General Meeting on 29 November 2012.
Dewhirst undertook the early technical work on the Galilee Basin that led to the award of the five current permits to Longreach No2 Pty Ltd, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Exoma.
He was also responsible for the technical direction of Exoma in late 2009 and early 2010.
"I would particularly like to thank Howard Dewhirst for his great insight and involvement in guiding the technical direction of the business during its formative first couple of years. Howard remains a major shareholder in Exoma and I am sure we will still have access to his many years of exploration experience," Barker said.
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