Prospector Offshore exercises options for two more jack-ups

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JUE2000EProspector Offshore Drilling S.A. has exercised two of its three options with China’s Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Offshore Co. Ltd. for the construction of two additional high specification harsh environment JU-2000E jack-up drilling rigs. These two new contracts bring the total number of new jack-up rigs Prospector Offshore will have under construction to four.

Prospector Offshore Drilling S.A. was incorporated in Luxembourg on May 28, 2010. The company was capitalized with an initial private placement offering of US $70 million which closed on December 3, 2010. On February 21, 2011 the company began trading publicly on the Oslo Axess Exchange under the symbol, PROS.

Total delivered cost of the two just-ordered rigs is estimated to be approximately $209 million each, including project management, drilling and handling tools, spare parts and commissioning costs. Contract and payment terms are consistent with the previous order of the two rigs placed in December 2010. The company anticipates that both jack-up rig deliveries from the shipyard will occur in the third quarter of 2013.

Prospector Offshore also announced today that it has secured a package of options including two new rig construction options at a turnkey price of $203 million (subject to standard escalations), deliveries of 27 and 31 months respectively, payment terms of 20 percent – 10 percent -70 percent, and validities until  December 31, 2011 and March 31, 2012 respectively. As part of the new agreement, the validity of the original third option has been reset to  December 31, 2011. The payment schedule of the original third option remains the same (10 percent at contract effectiveness and 90 percent at delivery) as the first four rigs.

Prospector Offshore President and CEO Robert W. Rose says “We are pleased to have exercised two of the rig construction options with DSIC Offshore earlier than originally planned. The demand for high specification jack-ups is increasing, and we are expecting shipyard cost inflation to continue through the remainder of this year. By the end of 2013, the Company will own and operate four high specification harsh environment jack-up rigs with the most technically capable and advanced drilling systems in the world.”

The rigs are based on the F&G JU2000E design, capable of operations in nominal water depths up to 400 feet, outfitted for 2 million pound hook load capacity and equipped to drill wells in high pressure/high temperature environments up to 35,000 feet. They are able to operate in the harsh environment of the North Sea (excluding Norway).

April 4, 2011

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