West Neptune drillship; Source: Seadrill

Seadrill finds more work for two drillships in Asia and US

Bermuda-headquartered offshore drilling contractor Seadrill has won a new assignment and secured an extension of an existing one for two drillships in its rig fleet. Thanks to this, one of the rigs will go to South Korea, Asia, to undertake drilling operations while the second rig’s stay in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico has been prolonged.

West Neptune drillship; Source: Seadrill

A one-well contract with an undisclosed operator will enable the West Capella drillship to move to South Korea. With an estimated duration of 40 days, the deal is valued at approximately $32 million, including a mobilization fee of around $10 million and excluding fees for additional services. This contract is expected to start in December 2024.

Based on Seadrill’s fleet status report from February 2024, the West Capella drillship is anticipated to remain on an assignment in Indonesia until August 2024. The Layaran-1 exploration well, drilled in South Andaman, about 100 kilometers offshore North Sumatra with the potential for over 6 TCF of gas-in-place, was spudded with the rig last year, based on the information from Mubadala Energy.

With a maximum drilling depth of 37,500 ft and a water depth of 10,000 ft, the 2008-built sixth-generation ultra-deepwater dual activity drillship was constructed by Samsung in South Korea. The rig can accommodate 180 people.

On the other hand, the West Neptune drillship has been awarded a six-month contract extension with LLOG in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, which is expected to begin in the third quarter of 2025 in direct continuation of the rig’s current contract. The estimated contract value of the extension is about $86 million, excluding fees for additional services, including managed pressure drilling (MPD).

According to Seadrill, the drillship will be upgraded with MPD capabilities during planned out-of-service periods, making it the tenth rig in the company’s fleet with MPD or MPD-equivalent technologies. The West Neptune is a seventh-generation ultra-deepwater Samsung 12,000 drillship capable of operating in water depths of 12,000 ft. The rig’s maximum drilling depth is 37,500 ft.

The latest set of awards comes after Seadrill disclosed in January 2024 another contract and extension, totaling approximately $97.5 million, along with a timeline for taking over management services for another drillship.