“If you drill it, buyers will come” seems to be the slogan behind the movement in shares of Zion Oil and Gas, Inc. (NASDAQ:ZN).
Since late in April, the company is raised a rig in anticipation of spudding a deep onshore well, coined Megiddo-Jezreel #1 in Israel’s Jezreel Valley. The 3,000-horsepower rig has a capacity of drilling to over 23,000 feet, well beyond the 15,000-foot target depth.
Drilling commenced during the first week of June.
With the project taking shape, Dallas-based Zion also named long-time legal advisor Jeffrey Moskowitz as its new Vice President and Israeli Branch General Manager.
From April 21 through Friday, shares of ZN nearly doubled in value to $2.08. The excitement swirling around the drilling is underscored by an independent study by Beicip-Franlab, an international consulting company that estimated 6.6 billion barrels of oil are still undiscovered in the offshore portion of Israel’s Levant Basin.
While onshore, Zion’s 99,0000-acre Megiddo-Jezreel License area is entirely within the Levant Basin.
A milestone at the project was announced on Monday, sending shares of ZN higher at a blistering pace. The company reported drilling operations reached the first casing point at approximately 2,000 feet.
A casing point is critical in drilling and production, as a point at which drilling of a particular diameter hole ends so casing for the well can be run and cemented.
Shares nearly doubled again, touching as high as $3.95 in Monday’s action, but have cooled back to $3.05 with about one hour left in the trading day.