And while the National Instrument 51-101 report it published on Friday is essentially a best guess of what might lie within the three target areas examined, it will be helpful in guiding prospective investors in its upcoming AIM float.
More than that, it tells the Canada-listed junior that it is worth the time, effort and expenditure pursuing further exploration work.
Compiled by Chapman Petroleum Engineering using existing 2D seismic and reservoir data for similar structures, the study assessed what may exist in the Middle Jurassic, or Dogger sandstones.
The best estimate gave a resource of almost 60mln barrels of 36-degree API oil from the three areas, with South Lead providing almost 28mln of those barrels.
The high estimate came in at 119.95mln barrels, while the low estimate was 29.98mln barrels.
Maxim told investors: “All material aspects for the evaluation were included including relevant nearby wells and or analogous reservoirs and geological structures and formations.
“Based on the information provided, sourced and analysed, Chapman believes there is sufficient merit to justify the work programme being proposed.”
The premise of Maxim, according to director Andrew Male, is it will be a hydrocarbon investment vehicle.
“We aren’t particularly operators,” he said. “Our objective is to establish a bona fide position in an exploration project and bring in a major or a mid-tier company that can exploit this opportunity.
“We will maintain a carried interest over a longer period of time.”
But there is quite a bit of work to be done in Morocco before it can open the doors to the data room and then bring in a partner.
It has been lucky in acquiring a large reconnaissance concession with a footprint in an area known for oil and gas production and a jurisdiction that is possibly the most fiscally benign in the world.
The concession is large, covering 5,116 square kilometres to the north of the country. It is near the coast and has infrastructure such as tarmacked roads and, importantly, export pipelines.
“We like to find an asset in an area that hasn’t been trodden over 100 times,” said Male.
“We prefer to seek projects where Maxim can be one of 20 not one of 500. That’s where Morocco comes into play.”
The plan now for Hassi Berkane is to re-process the existing 2D seismic shot across the reconnaissance concession area.
“We are going to confirm the integrity of the 2D now and with that knowledge we will then begin re-processing over 600 kilometres of 2D,” said Male.
“Beyond that, and prior to drilling an exploration well, we will complete a 3D package to further reinforce what we believe is there.”
However, Maxim has been provided a hint of what it might be sitting on by existing operators there.
“While things are highly prospective and we don’t know what outcome [of exploration efforts] will be, the pay zone from the three target locations appears quite thick,” said Male.
“The technical team that we will be engaging will be able to analyse similar formations in order to determine more accurately what the structures, anti-clines and pay zones are likely to contain.
“Combined with the reprocessed 2D and new technical data we are excited to get going.”
The Maxim director said the group would ideally like to drill the first well itself. The cost of doing this “is not out of the question and is achievable”, he added.
However, Maxim’s team, which also includes veteran natural resources investors Arthur Brown, who is the chairman, and Chris Farnworth, special project coordinator, are realistic enough to know you take the opportunities when they present themselves.
“The best scenario is [we partner] when we have completed an exploration well – which would be in 18-24 months,” said Male.
“If we find the right partner and the right financial relationship then we will bring them in.
“At this stage of the game we’d hope to secure enough capital to drill an exploration well to determine the economics and entice interest.”