Scotland-headquartered Cairn Energy PLC (LSE: CNE) and its joint venture partners have discovered oil in its Senegal-based FAN-1 exploration well.
The preliminary analysis of the well indicated a net oil bearing reservoir of 29 metres.
The well, located 1,427 metres deep in the Sangomar Deep block, reached the target depth of 4,927 metres.
Estimates for the well are in line with the pre-drill STOIIP predictions and include a proven resource of 250 million barrels (mmbbls), probable 950 mmbbls and possible 2,500 mmbbls.
Cairn CEO Simon Thomson said: "The oil discovered in the FAN-1 prospect is an important event for Senegal and the Joint Venture.
“We have encountered a very substantial oil bearing interval which may have significant potential as a standalone discovery.
“Furthermore, this result materially upgrades the prospectivity of the block with a proven petroleum system and a number of deep fan and shelf prospects established.”
Follow-up activity is targeted for 2015 onwards.
Following completion of the FAN-1 well, the rig will go on to complete the second well SNE-1, which is targeting a dual objective in 1,100 metre water depth.