Ontario’s Red Lake district has been recognized as one of the richest gold-producing areas of North America for many years, but that doesn’t mean just anyone can move in and strike it rich. The geology of the area requires a lot of skill and expertise in order to capitalize on the rich mineral resources found in the ground, and it takes a very special combination of experience and knowledge to make the most of the opportunities the Red Lake district presents. 

Fortunately for junior exploration and development company Pure Gold Mining Inc., experience and knowledge are two things the company has in abundance. As President and CEO Darin Labrenz explains, the company was founded with a strong base of know-how specifically grounded in the Red Lake district. “One of our greatest strengths here is the depth of our senior leadership,” Labrenz says. 

Puma Energy has greatly expanded its operations in Puerto Rico since it arrived on the island in 2008. The company has evolved from a wholesale provider to independent service stations to become one of the island’s largest oil retail and storage providers.

“We’ve come a long way in a short period of time,” General Manager Victor Dominguez says of the company’s diversification and growth, which began in 2010, when it purchased and rebranded six of the independent – or “white flag” – service stations it supplied. The company the following year finalized the acquisition of the assets of Caribbean Petroleum Corporation (CAPECO), which had entered bankruptcy following the 2009 explosion of its oil refinery in Puerto Rico. CAPECO’s assets included 147 service stations and a terminal in Bayamon, Puerto Rico, which Puma Energy environmentally remediated and improved as the result of voluntary agreements it had made with the U.S. EPA and Puerto Rico’s Environmental Quality Board. 

The winning combination of hard work and good people has been key to the growth of Mountain V Oil & Gas Inc., President S. Michael Shaver says. “We all get up early, stay late and everybody looks for opportunities,” he says. 

Based in Bridgeport, W.V., Mountain V acquires and develops oil and gas reserves. Shaver and his father, Steve Shaver, founded the company in 1994 after many years in the industry.

“Our intent of going into business was to acquire mature oil and gas assets,” the younger Shaver recalls. “We were fortunate enough to acquire wells close to home, in West Virginia and Pennsylvania.”

Headquartered in Dallas, Fleur de Lis (FDL) Energy is a private energy firm focused on acquiring, operating and exploiting oil and gas assets in North America. Through a partnership established in early 2014 with Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) & Co., FDL has deployed in excess of $1 billion to build a diverse portfolio of oil and gas properties.  

Founded in early 2014 by Porter Trimble, FDL takes a disciplined acquisition approach by using engineering, geological and geophysical data to realize an asset’s complete value, ultimately generating attractive, risk-adjusted returns and stable cash distributions to its investors. So far, the company has built a portfolio with assets located in Mississippi, West Texas and Wyoming, employing 150 people and producing around 20,000 BOE’s per day of oil and gas. 

Although it is a new company, Entegra Energy Solutions is built on a foundation of experience. Founding the company in July, its leaders had already carved out strong track records in the energy industry and brought together their expertise in the new company. 

Leading the way for the company are CEO Ralph Sutton and President Aaron Horne. Sutton is the former owner of United Coals, which operated for more than 30 years in the energy sector with its focus on the coal industry. United Coals received national recognition within the energy sector for its various safety and reclamation efforts over its years of operation. 

As for Horne, he is a former drilling and completions manager for a large oil and gas operator in the Marcellus and Utica shale basin. Horne holds a degree in occupational safety and environmental engineering.

CoilChem LLC came to the oil and gas industry in 2009 with plans to introduce new chemical solutions designed to improve horizontal well completions and work-overs. The Washington, Okla.-based company focused on chemicals that would extend completion depths and improve operational success, says Jason Watts, co-owner and vice president of manufacturing.

“Those operations can be challenging,” says Watts, who co-founded the company after gaining several years of chemical experience in various industries. “That was always our main challenge,” he says. “ What we have focused on is the chemistry of the fluids being pumped. The chemistry had always been the weakest link.”

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