OCTOBER 16, 2013 — Transocean Ltd. (NYSE: RIG) has been awarded a five-year contract for a newbuild dynamically positioned ultra-deepwater drillship by Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
Construction of the newbuild drillship is expected to commence during the fourth quarter of 2014 at Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co., Ltd.'s Okpo, South Korea, shipyard, where Transocean's five Enhanced Enterprise-Class rigs were built and where the company currently has six other ultra-deepwater drillships under construction.
Shipyard delivery is scheduled for the second quarter of 2016. After customer acceptance, the contract is expected to commence in the fourth quarter of 2016, contributing an estimated revenue backlog of approximately $1.1 billion, excluding mobilization. Excluding capitalized interest, the capital investment for the newbuild drillship is an estimated $725 million. Capital costs include the shipyard contract; project management; all owner-furnished equipment; capital spares and inventory; and all costs associated with operational readiness.
Featuring state-of-the-art equipment, the newbuild drillship will include Transocean's patented dual-activity drilling technology that allows for parallel drilling operations. The vessel will be outfitted with two 15,000 psi blowout preventers (BOPs) which are expected to reduce non-productive time between wells. The drillship will be able to accommodate a future upgrade to a 20,000 psi BOP when it becomes available from the OEM suppliers.
The rig will also feature a 2.5-million-pound hook load capacity, a variable deckload capacity of 23,000 metric tons, enhanced well-completion capabilities and diesel engines configured to comply with anticipated Tier III International Maritime Organization (IMO) emissions standards.
The drillship is designed and outfitted to operate in water depths of up to 12,000 feet and drill wells to 40,000 feet. It will have accommodations for 240 people.
"We are delighted to continue our partnership with Chevron in pioneering ultra-deepwater drillships that in the past have set world records and achieved strong utilization with time-saving efficiencies," said Steven L. Newman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transocean Ltd. "Further, the addition of this latest newbuild drillship demonstrates the execution of our asset strategy and commitment to increasing our exposure to high-specification floaters with industry-leading capabilities."
The seventh Transocean unit is not the only addition to the DSME drillship backlog. South Korea's news agency reported yesterday that the shipbuilder has won a $1.24 billion order to build two drillships for delivery by the end of 2015 for an undisclosed African customer.