Woodside has extended its international expansion to Africa through a farm-in agreement with Beach Energy in Tanzania.
Chief executive Peter Coleman's deal will see Woodside take a 70 per cent participating interest in the Lake Tanganyika prospective basin.
Mr Coleman said the farm-in provided an opportunity to secure a big footprint in an underexplored oil prone frontier basin.
"Securing this highly prospective acreage represents another step forward in building Woodside's global exploration portfolio," he said.
Beach Energy said Woodside would reimburse its share of back costs, fund seismic operations over the next 12 months and contribute to Beach's share of exploration costs.
The explorer would remain as operator through the next stage of the seismic operations. Woodside has the option of becoming the operator at a later date.
The deal is subject to Tanzanian government approval.
"Bringing a world class operator into this area such as Woodside will not only ensure Beach is carried to the next phase of exploration, but will also define initial drilling prospects as a result of the further seismic work that will be undertaken," Beach managing director Reg Nelson said.
Woodside shares were up 7 cents to $41.53 at 9.16am, while Beach was up 0.2 cents to $1.642.