Who We Are

Founded in Oklahoma. Fueling the Nation.

Based in America's Heartland, With Access To Our Key Energy Regions.

Protégé Energy III is an independent oil and gas exploration and production company based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. We pursue growth by strategically investing in key resource plays that yield the most attractive rates of return.

Our management team brings together diverse technical backgrounds in the acquisition, exploration, and development of oil and gas reserves, including: horizontal drilling, recompletions, reservoir stimulations, artificial lift, waterfloods and enhanced recovery in multiple basins.

With experience in numerous basins nationwide, we focus primarily on the Eagle Ford play in South Texas and the Marcellus/Utica Shale plays in the Appalachian Basin. We are seeking additional investment opportunities in the Eagle Ford and strive to form mutually beneficial partnerships with leaseholders, mineral owners, other operators and partners.

Protégé III’s financial partner, EnCap Investments, and Protégé management have provided a $500 million equity commitment, advancing the successful partnership that began in 2004 with the establishment of Protégé I.

Protégé I was founded in 2004 and Protégé II was founded in 2008. Both were incorporated as Delaware Limited Liability Companies by Martin Thalken, his management team and EnCap Investments. 

Partnering with EnCap Investments, the companies pursued an acquire-and-develop strategy, as well as a lease-and-drill strategy. Protégé I made strategic acquisitions in the Anadarko and Arkoma Basins, while Protégé II made strategic acquisitions in southeast Ohio of the Appalachian Basin, each achieving value primarily through the drill bit.

Through strategic acquisitions and development drilling, Protégé I grew its production to nearly 4 Mmcfed, proved reserves to 43 bcfe and 3P reserves to 69 bcfe by mid-2008. Notable reservoir targets included the Granite Wash in the Texas Panhandle and the Woodford Shale in Eastern Oklahoma. In 2008, Protégé I sold the majority of its assets in several transactions to Forest Oil, EV Energy Partners and Newfield.

Protégé II formed a strategic partnership with a Columbus, Ohio-based producer, then pursued a lease-and-drill strategy for the liquids-rich Marcellus and Utica shale plays in southeast Ohio. Protégé II created a contiguous 20,000-acre lease position in one of the most abundant areas of the liquids-rich Marcellus and dry gas Utica, growing its 3P reserves to 1,300 bcfe by mid-2012. Protégé II sold its Marcellus/Utica assets to Statoil at year-end 2012.

Through grass roots leasing Protégé III acquired a 17,000 net acre contiguous lease position in southeast Ohio.  In late 2015 Protégé III drilled the Caywood A-1H well to a total measured depth of 15,462.  This well extended the Utica / Point Pleasant play to the most southerly extent in southeast Ohio.

In 2016 Protégé III acquired 23,000 net acres in the Eagle Ford play from Newfield Exploration.  The company drilled and completed 6 operated wells in 2017 and by year-end net production in the assets had increased by over 45 percent.  At year-end 2017 Protege III had 113 Eagle Ford wells producing 10,000 net BOEPD.

To meet our experienced leadership team, please visit Our Team