While its a long way to go between having majors in the data room and them signing papers - Ray did confirm at least half of the 10 on the list are signed into confidentiality and are in the "virtual data room." He seemed very confident that the rest will be signed in shortly - and said starting in early July he would begin making presentations to them. What I also found interesting is that Ray said these were the only 10 companies in the world which made the "list," satisfying his 4 points of interest (rig availability, knowledge, experience, etc.), and ALL are going to view the data room.
Also, said they were completely clear with Guinea - there should be no delay at all. He's made the trips out and gone over everything - and they are on board. This is a big positive with being able to move forward quickly with the next well, which brings me to my next point of interest.....
Ray seemed fairly confident of drilling next year. In fact, the timeline shows targets selected before year's end, with drilling as early as April... which would be very impressive if accomplished. To think in less than 6 months time we could have a major as the operator, and then within 1 quarter thereafter to be drilling in the ultra-deep - I can't really imagine it happening that fast but it sure sounds great and i'm hoping. That'd be a great outcome and super progress in less than a year's time I think.
All we really need now is the capability to drill....from the market's perspective- meaning a partner. If we can get a partner on good terms for us - the market should instantly move us considerably as it ponders the outcome of the turbidite wells - with a major as the operator no doubt. I really hope Ray's optimism on the partnering process is sound - and without any exaggeration or false hope.