Norway based oil driller Seadrill has ordered its sixth drillship from Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) .
The company has ordered the additional drillship expecting strong demand for ultra-deepwater drilling rigs driven by high oil prices and large deep-water discoveries and drilling development.
Seadrill CEO Alf Thorkildsen said with the available capacity in 2013 and 2014 the company will take advantage of strong demand for drilling services with high dayrates and longer charter contracts.
"We will continue to aggressively build Seadrill’s earnings and further expansion of the building program is expected in the months to come," Thorkildsen said.
The vessel is planned to be delivered in the second quarter of 2014.
Seadrill has also secured a fixed price option for a further ultra deep-water drillship.
All the six drill ships under construction at the SHI shipyard will be of similar design with each having a hook load capacity of 1250t and will be capable of working at a water depth of 12,000ft.
In addition, the drill ships will be equipped with seven ram configuration of the Blow out Preventer (BOP) stack as well as storing and handling capacity for a second BOP.
The vessels will be equipped to operate in the Gulf of Mexico, Brazil and West and East Africa.
In April the company had exercised an option with the South Korean shipyard to build an ultra-deepwater dual derrick drillship for $600m.
The new drillship will be similar to the pair of drill ships ordered from SHI in November 2010 with scheduled delivery in third quarter of 2013.
In February this year also the company had ordered a pair of ultra-deepwater drillships at the same yard with scheduled delivery in the second and third quarter 2014.
Drillship operates a fleet of 63 units including drillships, jack-up rigs, semi-submersible rigs and tender rigs.
Image: All the six drill ships will be of similar design with each having a hook load capacity of 1250t and capable of working at a water depth of 12,000ft. Photo: Seadrill