Transocean Ltd. to sell 38 shallow water drilling rigs to Shelf Drilling International Holdings, Ltd. for approximately US$1.05-billion.
Shelf Drilling is a newly formed company sponsored equally by Castle Harlan, Inc., CHAMP Private Equity and Lime Rock Partners.
"This agreement marks an important milestone in our asset strategy to increase our focus on high-specification floaters and jackups, improving our long-term competitiveness," said Steven L. Newman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transocean Ltd.
The sales price includes approximately $855 million in cash, subject to working capital and other closing adjustments, and $195 million in seller financing. Seller financing will be in the form of preference shares issued by an affiliate of Shelf Drilling. As a component of the agreement, Transocean will provide various transition support services to Shelf Drilling for a period subsequent to the closing of the transactions. The transactions are expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2012, subject to certain conditions.
David Mullen, President and Chief Executive Officer of Shelf Drilling, added, "This is an exciting opportunity with great potential. Our strategy will be to maintain an exclusive focus on shallow water drilling, leveraging decades of complementary industry experience of management, three leading investment firms, and our employees, to provide best in class drilling operations for our customers."
Transocean is a leading international provider of offshore contract drilling services for oil and gas wells. The company specializes in technically demanding sectors of the global offshore drilling business with a particular focus on deepwater and harsh environment drilling services, and believes that it operates one of the most versatile offshore drilling fleets in the world.