ENSCO orders premium jackup from Keppel FELS
ENSCO International Incorporated (NYSE: ESV) says a subsidiary has entered into an agreement with Keppel FELS Limited in Singapore to exchange three ENSCO rigs and $55 million of cash for the construction of a new high performance premium jackup rig.
The three rigs to be exchanged are ENSCO 55, a 300 ft Friede & Goldman 780 Mod II jackup rig built in 1981, and two Gulf of Mexico platform rigs, ENSCO 23 and ENSCO 24, built in 1980.
The new premium jackup rig, to be named ENSCO 107, will be an enhanced KFELS MOD V (B) design modified to ENSCO specifications. The rig is a sister rig to ENSCO 106, a joint venture project with Keppel FELS, which is currently under construction in Singapore. ENSCO 106 is expected to be delivered by year-end, and delivery of ENSCO 107 is expected in late 2005. The transaction is subject to execution of a definitive construction contract and regulatory approvals.
Carl Thorne, ENSCO's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented on the transaction, "The agreement to exchange three older rigs plus cash for construction of the ENSCO 107 is another step in our continuing fleet renewal program, and furthers our expansion in the high specification jackup rig market. ENSCO 55 is our one remaining F&G 780 Mod II jackup rig that has not been upgraded as part of our fleet enhancement program. ENSCO 23 and ENSCO 24 have been idle for some time, and including them in the transaction furthers our stated intent of de-emphasizing the more specialized equipment remaining in our fleet. We believe this transaction is a conservative and cost- effective approach to upgrading and rationalizing our rig fleet as the industry continues to evolve to more demanding drilling applications."