Shanghai: Northern Offshore, part of the John Fredriksen empire, has ordered two LeTourneau Super 116E Class jackup drilling rigs, with a priced option for the construction of two additional rigs of the same design. The yard contract price is less than $180 million, with favorable tail-end-heavy payment terms. Delivery of the rigs is expected during the first and third quarters of 2016, respectively. “Construction will be carried out by an experienced and well qualified Chinese shipyard,” the company said without specifying which one.
Gary W. Casswell, president and chief executive officer of Northern Offshore said, "This is a turning point for our company, as we continue to execute our stated corporate strategy of transitioning into the ownership and operation of new, state-of-the-art jackup rigs. We believe, after evaluating several investment alternatives, that investing in this class of jackup will give the best return on capital. We are confident there will continue to be strong demand for jackup rigs with the technical specifications and capabilities of these new assets, which are ideally suited for marketplaces in South East Asia, the Middle East, West Africa and Latin America. Further, this order represents the strong commitment of the board of directors to the future development of the company and strengthening of earnings growth for our shareholders." [04/10/13]