ExxonMobil has signed up for a Seadrill newbuild drillship for work off West Africa for up to three years.
The ultra-deepwater West Saturn, currently under construction in South Korea, will work for the US supermajor at the Erha North Phase 2 development off Nigeria, Seadrill said on Friday.
The Norwegian contractor said the deal with ExxonMobil subsidiary Esso Exploration & Production Nigeria was won along with partner Field Offshore Design Engineering Nigeria.
The oil company has taken the sixth generation unit for a firm two-year period, with a one-year option.
Seadrill said the primary contract term, understood to refer to the firm period, would yield total revenue to both it and Field Offshore of $497 million, inclusive of mobilisation. Without providing a sum for mobilisation, this equates to a dayrate inclusive of mobilisation of $680,800 for two years.
The unit, set for delivery from Samsung Heavy Industries in September, will initially be outfitted to drill in water depths up to 10,000 feet. However, it is capable of operating in 12,000 feet of water, of handling two blowout preventers and drilling to 40,000 feet.
Analyst Cowen & Co recently specualted that the drillship would be fixed by French supermajor Total for a three-year contract at the Egina field, also off Nigeria.
ExxonMobil and Anglo-Dutch supermajor Shell are aiming to get 50,000 barrels per day in production from Erha North Phase 2 next year.