US Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 259 results show industry optimism

March 29, 2023
Bids increased 38% over the 2021 lease sale, and majors represent 70% of all bids.

Offshore staff

NEW ORLEANS – The US Gulf of Mexico region-wide Lease Sale 259 held today attracted 353 bids from 32 companies, with high bids totaling nearly $264 million. The amount of activity surpassed the previous lease sale spend in 2021, demonstrating optimism for the region, according to Wood Mackenzie analysts.

  • High bids increased by $72 million (38%) compared to total lease sale spend in 2021
  • A total of 313 blocks received bids, only five more than the prior sale 
  • The number of deepwater blocks receiving bids increased by 30% 
  • The high bid amount was the highest since 2019
  • Bids/acre for deepwater blocks also increased 22% to $216/acre
  • A total of 98 blocks on the shelf received bids, with ExxonMobil bidding on 69 of them.

Commenting on the results, Justin Rostant, principal research analyst at Wood Mackenzie, said: