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Pride International announced the dedication of the first of its four new deepwater drillships under construction by Samsung Heavy Industries...

Deep Ocean Ascension drillship nears delivery

Pride's Deep Ocean Ascension is scheduled to be delivered in late February 2010 and will make its way to the US Gulf of Mexico, where it will commence a five-year contract with BP.

Pride International announced the dedication of the first of its four new deepwater drillships under construction by Samsung Heavy Industries in South Korea, the Deep Ocean Ascension. The company is expected to take delivery of the rig in late February 2010, followed by the mobilization of the rig to the US Gulf of Mexico, where it is expected to commence operations under a five-year contract with BP.

In a shipyard ceremony, Louis A Raspino, president and chief executive officer of Pride and current IADC chairman, commented, “The delivery of the Deep Ocean Ascension will represent the addition of a new, technologically advanced generation of rigs to the Pride fleet. The deepwater sector is expected to offer strong prospects and long-term demand visibility, and this rig provides our clients with a complete package of high-specification attributes necessary to address the challenges inherent in deepwater well construction,” he said.

Pride committed in 2007 to expand its presence in the deepwater sector, and its four-rig construction program is a cornerstone of the expansion strategy. The addition of these drillships will contribute to the company’s expanding revenue base from floating assets, which accounted for 78% of total revenues in 2009, including 52% from the deepwater segment.

The next drillship to be delivered in the four-rig construction program is the Deep Ocean Clarion, with an expected August 2010 completion date, followed by the Deep Ocean Mendocino and the Deep Ocean Molokai, both in 2011.

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