The company can earn up to a 100% working interest in the project by achieving various milestones set out in a farm-out agreement finalised in May.
Following the acquisition of 43 line kilometres of 2D seismic data, New World was approved a further 10% interest in the project, bringing its total current stake to 35%.
New World chief executive William Kelleher said the assignment of extra interest marked the formal end of the seismic acquisition programme and the beginning of a highly anticipated drilling campaign.
“On 27 September 2012 we spudded our first well on our B Crest prospect, which, on completion, will see our interest in the Project increase to 56.6%,” he said in a statement.
The B Crest prospect is planned to be drilled to a total depth of 7000 feet into the mid-cretaceous Yalbac-2 formation. Results are expected by the end of the year.
The company announced on Tuesday that funds from a share placement raising £8.6million ($13.8 million) would be used to drill a third well at Blue Creek, as well as for a planned 3D seismic programme on its Danica Juntland project in Denmark.
The third Blue Creek well will target Prospect A, which has been independently estimated to hold 124 million barrels of oil.