press release

Spirit Energy 76 unit denies Shell's allegations

Sugar Land, Texas, Sept. 25, 1997 Spirit Energy 76, Unocal Corporation's Lower 48 exploration and production business unit, responded to Shell allegations with the following statement:

"We have received and reviewed the petition and find it to be without merit. We categorically deny all of the allegations. Spirit Energy 76 has taken multiple, well documented steps to ensure that new hires have not and will not convey proprietary information of their former employers to Spirit Energy 76. In fact, Spirit Energy 76 has required each new hire to agree not to provide any proprietary information to Spirit Energy 76 as a condition of employment.

"The Shell employees came to Spirit Energy 76 through more than one placement firm. All of this information has been communicated to Shell prior to the lawsuit. Shell has made unreasonable demands with regard to Spirit Energy 76's employment of former Shell employees which would severely limit their ability to work in their profession."

Since January 1, 1997, Spirit Energy 76 has hired 29 geoscientists and technical professionals from 14 different companies. Spirit Energy 76 will continue to grow its world class exploration program and attract top qualified professionals from the industry.

Updated: September 1997