Transocean Sedco Forex drillship Discoverer Spirit Commences Operations
The following news release was issued by Transocean Sedco Forex Inc.
HOUSTON, Sept. 19 -- Transocean Sedco Forex Inc. today announced that its newly constructed, ultra-deepwater drillship, Discoverer Spirit, has completed acceptance criteria testing and has commenced a five-year, estimated $372 million contract with Unocal Corporation's Spirit Energy 76 division in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. The rig is currently in route to Spirit Energy's deepwater Dana Point Prospect located at Walker Ridge block 678.
The dynamically positioned Discoverer Spirit is the second Enterprise-class drillship to enter the Transocean Sedco Forex active fleet, following the December 1999 delivery of the Discoverer Enterprise. The rig , which can drill in water depths of up to 10,000 feet, possesses the company's patented dual activity drilling process, comprised primarily of two complete drilling systems within one derrick. The dual activity drilling process allows for certain well construction tasks to be handled simultaneously, rather than in a consecutive manner, and is designed to provide up to a 40% improvement in deepwater well construction efficiency.
A third Enterprise-class drillship, the Discoverer Deep Seas, is undergoing final construction and outfitting at the Aker Gulf Marine yard near Corpus Christi, Texas and is expected to commence a five-year contract with Chevron late in the fourth quarter of 2000.
Transocean Sedco Forex Inc. is the world's largest offshore drilling contractor, with an equity market capitalization in excess of $12.8 billion. The company's mobile offshore drilling fleet is comprised of 72 rigs, including five newbuilds not yet active. This modern and versatile fleet is located in every major offshore oil and gas drilling region. Transocean Sedco Forex Inc. specializes in technically demanding segments of the offshore drilling business, including industry-leading positions in deepwater and harsh environment drilling services. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol " RIG ".
Statements regarding contract terms and estimated commencement date of drilling contracts, contract revenue and drilling efficiencies, as well as any other statements that are not historical facts in this release, are forward- looking statements that involve certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions. These include but are not limited to operating hazards and delays, risks associated with drilling operations, actions by customers and other third parties, the future price of oil and gas, and other factors detailed in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which are available free of charge on the SEC's website at www.sec.gov. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those indicated.
Updated: September 2000