Economou set to pocket up to $134m from Ocean Rig sale

George Economou is set to pocket more than $130m if Transocean’s bid to take over Ocean Rig wins shareholder approval.

Buried deep in a 531-page prospectus published recently on the proposed merger between the two drilling outfits it emerges that Economou, through Marshall Islands-registered TMS Offshore, which may be deemed to be beneficially owned by him, will be paid a “convenience termination fee” of up to $134m.

Shareholders are warned in the filing: “Ocean Rig shareholders should be aware that Ocean Rig’s directors and executive officers have interests in the Merger that may be in addition to, or different from, the interests of Ocean Rig shares generally.” These interests include a 9.31% Economou stake discussed in the section Security Ownership of Ocean Rig Directors and Executive Officers.

Economou stepped down from serving as Ocean Rig’s CEO, together with his nephew whose role as CFO also ended last December, following the company’s restructuring.

On September 4 Transocean announced a proposed acquisition of Ocean Rig in a $2.7bn cash and stock transaction, inclusive of Ocean Rig’s net debt. The transaction is expected to be completed during the first quarter of 2019.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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