Oil And Gas For The Little Guy

Yeah Yeah Yeah I have the worst timing of all time. Still, the idea that this vehicle exists is important!

One of the regrets of my last ten years as a Northeasterner-turned-Texan is that I’ve only fulfilled some of the stereotypes. 


To be fair to me, I’ve accomplished important ones. I wear Lucchese boots. I wear bespoke guayaberas – shout-out Dos Carolinas! I am not yet, however, an investor in oil and gas. I say this with some wistful regret. I want to fit in as a real Texan.

I have recently discovered a possible way to correct this – the subject of the rest of this column – but I should start with a few reasons why I haven’t yet invested in oil and gas. The most obvious reason is that I don’t have enough money to be invited into large-scale opportunities. Next, I have no particular expertise that would assist me in oil and gas investing. Prudence suggests – and I always suggest – doing the simplest, low-cost investing thing that requires the least amount of knowledge. 

Oil and gas investments are famously opaque and high-cost opportunities – meaning if you buy into some heavily-promoted deal, it’s hard to avoid just funding a dry hole while paying many layers of fees to the operator or promoter, who makes money whether they are successful or not. The proverbial “heads you win, tails I lose,” kind of situation.

Having laid out some caveats – which hold true no matter what – I am intrigued by a Houston-based online platform called Energy Funders [LINK: https://www.energyfunders.com] designed for the little guy (like me) to invest in oil and gas opportunities.

When you create an investor account on Energy Funders (as I did this month) you can access specific oil and gas exploration opportunities, with a minimum as small as $5,000. Garrett Corley, the VP of investor relations who called to vet me as an investor, says they average about one opportunity per month on their platform, with 34 deals closed to date.

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