Ensco orders jack-up duo at Lamprell

LeTourneau Super 116E jack-up under construction at Lamprell LeTourneau Super 116E jack-up under construction at Lamprell

APRIL 16, 2014 — Ensco plc (NYSE:ESV) has ordered two high-specification jack-ups, ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141 at UAE shipbuilder Lamprell. Both rigs, which will incorporate Ensco's patented Canti-Leverage Advantage technology, are enhanced versions of the LeTourneau Super 116E jack-up design and will include design specifications necessary to comply with regulatory and customer requirements in the Middle East, the primary target market for the units. They are also suitable for most of the markets around the world outside of the Middle East.

The rigs are scheduled for delivery in mid-2016 from Lamprell's newest shipyard located in Hamriyah in the United Arab Emirates.

Ensco says the rigs enhance its standardization strategy since the equipment package matches much of the proven technology used across the company's premium jack-up fleet - the largest in the world.

ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141 will be constructed under a fixed-price contract. Including commissioning, systems integration testing and project management, the total construction cost is estimated to be $430 million, or $215 million per rig. The contract with Lamprell includes options for two additional rigs of similar design.

Lamprell values the contract at approximately $390 million (excluding the two option units).

"Over the past three years, we have successfully contracted our ENSCO 120 Series newbuild jackup rigs well ahead of delivery based on the advantages of our proprietary technology," said Dan Rabun, Chairman, President and CEO. "While we recognize that many newbuild rigs are entering the market, we believe our new ENSCO 140 and ENSCO 141 jack-ups will attract significant customer interest based on their unique design, which is predicated on detailed market analysis of customer preferences."

Ensco says that enhanced crane capacity, liquid mud storage and living quarters with 140 beds will translate into significant logistical efficiencies and cost savings for customers. The patented Canti-Leverage Advantage technology, first used on ENSCO 120 Series rigs, also provides cost advantages allowing customers to drill more wells from one location when utilizing the enhanced hoisting capacity at the farthest reach of the cantilever. Other key features of the rig design include a dual-drilling fluid system, a 1.5 million-pound derrick, TDS-8 top drive and a 15k BOP.

The rigs will initially be outfitted to work in water depths up to 340 ft and may be upgraded to operate in up to 400 ft of water. They will be capable of drilling to a maximum total depth of 30,000 ft.

With this new order, Ensco now has eight newbuild rigs under construction: five premium jack-ups and three ultra-deepwater drillships.

"Our high-grading strategy keeps us at the forefront of industry technology - a key factor in our ability to maintain our number one rating in customer satisfaction," commented Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Jay Swent. "By maintaining our disciplined, return-driven investment strategy - where we standardize on differentiated rig designs that precisely match customer preferences - we seek to continue to deliver favorable returns to shareholders."

James Moffat, Chief Executive Officer, Lamprell, said: "This contract award demonstrates Lamprell's position as one of the world's leading builders of jack-up rigs and we are confident of our ability to deliver the rigs successfully and to our usual high safety and quality standards. We are delighted to be announcing this significant contract win from Ensco, a world leading offshore drilling company, which has trusted Lamprell with important shipyard projects in the past."