According to three people familiar with the subject, an oil field company of the Oklahoma region that played a key role in Venezuela’s high-profile attempt to persuade the world to stop production declines in its degraded oilfields.
In 2016, the U.S. driller Horizontal Well was awarded a contract of $1.29 billion for the drilling of 191 wells at the Orinoco Belt in Venezuela, part of a rare plan to sharply improve production and stop the economic collapse of Venezuela. Using the documents obtained at the moment from Reuters, it and two other drilling companies had been asked to fund the work themselves and be paid for in future production.
But for the company, its Canadian lender Callidus Capital Corp, or Venezuela the mega-deal did not take place. Horizontal has never finished the wells, its financial backer paid for the losses on the loan and the production in Venezuela remained in decline.
Horizontal’s ex-CEO Todd Swanson did not answer a questionnaire to his mail, nor to a LinkedIn page for feedback, who participated in the contracting executive ceremony in Venezuela. His former Chairman Jeremy Klein, too, did not answer the remarks.
No questions regarding loan size, recoveries or other details have been addressed by Moore. Nonetheless, he submitted legal documents referencing Callidus ‘ previous claim that one of his former managers had botched the horizontal loan. The case focuses on Callidus and Catalyst Capital Group Inc., its principal shareholder, who had conspired to damage the two Toronto firms through separate creditors, borrowing companies and journalists.
According to a Venezuelan oil industry boss, Horizontal opened an office in Venezuela. American sanctions against state-run oil company PDVSA stopped the project, a person who responded to an appeal to his Purcell office, Oklahoma but did not identify himself.
Swanson, Horizontal Chief Executive Officer, stood next to Nicolas Maduro, Venezuelan President, on the television ceremony in 2017, in which Maduro promoted the potential of three drillers to add up to 250,000 barrels of oil a day.
Oil output then fell. Between January to November last year, according to official figures, Venezuela pumped 1,01 billion barrels of crude per day, nearly 75 years for the country, and below half of the country, at the moment the deal was announced, was 2,49 million BPD.