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South Korea: Samsung Yard Bags $ 600 Mln UDW Drillship Order

Seadrill has entered into a turnkey contract to build a new ultra-deepwater drillship at the Samsung yard in South Korea. The project value price is estimated to be around US$600 million (including project management, drilling and handling tools, spares, capitalized interest and operations preparations) with tail-heavy payment terms payable upon delivery, which is scheduled within the fourth quarter 2014.

Delivery is scheduled for the fourth quarter 2014. In addition, Seadrill has agreed a fixed price option to build a further drillship at the yard, with delivery in the first quarter 2015. With the current strong demand there is limited availability of rigs in 2014 and Seadrill believes it is likely that the option will be exercised and is currently discussing details of upgrades of that unit.

The drillship will be of the same design as the existing six drillships under construction at Samsung and will have a hook load capability of 1,250 tons and a water depth capacity of up to 12,000 feet targeting operations in areas such as the Gulf of Mexico, Brazil and West and East Africa. Also, these units will be outfitted with seven ram configuration of the blowout preventer (BOP) stack and with storing and handling capacity for a second BOP.

Yard costs are currently at very attractive levels. This together with the delivery time in 2014, the strength of the ultra-deepwater market and Seadrill’s proven track-record of taking delivery on time and on budget makes this into an investment which is likely to deliver an excellent return to our shareholders.

Seadrill’s construction program now totals 19 units, including 7 drillships, 2 harsh environment semi-submersibles, 5 tender rigs and 5 jack ups. In addition the Company has fixed priced options for three ultra-deepwater/harsh environment units.

The initial installments for the new drillship will be funded by liquidity from the recent US$1 billion bond offering.

Chairman of Seadrill Limited John Fredriksen says, “We have a unique environment where both daily rates and contract duration are increasing to new highs, while yard prices remain low due to the overcapacity in the shipyard industry. This presents an excellent investment opportunity under which we can continue to aggressively grow Seadrill. The new ordering has been evaluated up against several M&A and asset proposals but the Board has concluded that organic growth through contracting new buildings at attractive prices is likely to give higher long-term return to shareholders. The deepwater drilling industry is transforming from an exploration to a development industry. Such a transformation will trigger a significant increase in the need for the drilling of production wells in order to connect the fields that have been successfully explored in the recent years.”

Fredriksen continued: “Seadrill is best positioned within the drilling industry to meet this tightness. We have in total nine ultra-deep/ harsh environment units for delivery in 2013 – 2015 plus options for an additional three. Two of these units have already been employed on long-term contracts. We are currently in specific discussions regarding attractive long-term employment opportunities for a majority of the remaining firm units. Clarification around these fixtures should be expected in the months to come. The Board has in recent press releases expressed that they are confident that an attractive financing package can be arranged for the new building program. This situation has further improved in the recent months, driven by a well oversubscribed bank financing, good progress on the export financing side as well as the successful trading of the new US$1 billion five-year unsecured note. With a total order backlog in excess of US$20 billion which is likely to increase further in the months to come the Board is confident that the new ordering can be financed without raising additional equity and will contribute positively to future valuation as well as dividend capacity. Seadrill will continue to monitor opportunities in the new building market including the possibilities to declare the existing three options. The target is to continue to grow Seadrills organization, fleet and earnings potential in an optimal and dynamic way. The Board is increasingly excited about the strength of the market and the way Seadrill is exposed to this operationally and financially.”

Shipbuilding Tribune – South Korea: Samsung Yard Bags $ 600 Mln UDW Drillship Order.

Vigor Announces ULSTEIN’s SX151 Design in the United States

ULSTEIN has over time been cooperating with the American shipbuilding group Vigor Industrial in the development of the conceptual design for a coastguard vessel (OPC – Offshore Patrol Cutter). Vigor is now announcing ULSTEIN’s SX151 design in the United States as part of a campaign aimed at the U.S. Coast Guard, that plans to renew its fleet with up to 25 new ships.

In response to the U.S. Coast Guard’s demanding Offshore Patrol Cutter requirements, Vigor Industrial looked beyond the conventional. With the Ulstein X-BOW®, Vigor delivers unmatched seakeeping and endurance in a capable offshore workhorse”, states Vigor in their campaign «Affordable Innovation. Proven performance.»

We have worked together with Vigor for two years, and have developed a concept we have great faith in. The ship is 100 metres long and 16.4 metres wide and has a top speed of 22 knots. A typical operating speed can vary from 5 to 22 knots, and the ship is therefore equipped with a combined diesel mechanic / diesel electric propulsion system. The ship accommodates 124 persons, is equipped with a helicopter deck and hangar, and a hangar for three rescue boats,” says Deputy CEO, Tore Ulstein, responsible for Market and Innovation in Ulstein Group.

This is a long-term project: “Several yards are currently sending their prospects to the Coast Guard. Towards the end of 2014 or beginning of 2015, the Coast Guard will award the contract”, says Ulstein.

Shipbuilding Tribune – Vigor Announces ULSTEIN’s SX151 Design in the United States.

Spain: Metalships & Docks to Build Subsea Construction Vessel for McDermott

McDermott International, Inc. (McDermott) will build another high capacity reeled pipelay vessel with top-tier payload capacity, tentatively named Lay Vessel 108 (LV108). The vessel will be a sister ship to the recently completed subsea construction vessel the Lay Vessel North Ocean 105 (LV105), and is to be built to similar specifications at Metalships and Docks S.A.U. shipyard in Vigo, Spain.

LV108 is another milestone in our vessel renewal program focusing on the subsea construction market for flexible and rigid product installation,” said Stephen M. Johnson, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of McDermott. “Market analysis indicates that the subsea and deepwater construction market is expected to continue to grow and there is demand for more tonnage in both the rigid reel lay and flexible lay markets. The LV108 is expected to meet this need.”

LV108 is designed for advanced deepwater operations with a high-capacity tower for rigid and flexible pipelay and state-of-the-art marine construction equipment that will enable installation of a variety of products to a depth of 10,000 feet, including rigid-reeled pipelines, subsea components and hardware, and deepwater moorings for floating facilities as well as flexible products – cables and umbilicals.

The principal characteristics of the vessel, such as payload, tension capacity and product size, will mirror those of the LV105, but McDermott anticipates enhanced functionality of the LV108 equipment design compared to the LV105. Delivery of LV108 is anticipated to be around third quarter 2014 for outfitting of the custom-designed lay system, built by a specialist fabricator in Europe.

The vertical reel will have a nominal payload of 2,500 tons plus, subject to vessel loading conditions, and a lay tower operational between 90 and 40 degrees. The nominal tension capacity is expected to be 400 tons, and the range of pipe the vessel can install is between 4 to 16 inches diameter. This 427-foot, dynamically positioned vessel will be equipped with a 400-ton heave compensated crane, will have a transit speed of 15 knots and will operate across a range of water depths up to more than 10,000 feet.

In May we completed building and outfitting the LV105, a vessel that aims to improve our worldwide capabilities to meet the growing needs and technical challenges of the subsea and deepwater markets. The vessel will perform its first project in Asia in up to 4,430 feet of water. We look forward to LV108 joining the LV105 and other vessels in our fleet in 2014,” said Johnson.

Shipbuilding Tribune – Spain: Metalships & Docks to Build Subsea Construction Vessel for McDermott.

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