Seadrill (NYSE: SDRL ) started June off on a very positive note after the contract driller signed a $1.1 billion five-year contract for its West Jupiter ultra-deepwater drillship. That contract was a sign of good things to come as Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE: FCX ) agreed to a two-year drilling contract worth $425 million with Rowan (NYSE: RDC ) for its Rowan Relentless drillship. Finally, Ocean Rig (NASDAQ: ORIG ) signed a six-year, $1.3 billion agreement for its Skyros drillship as well as a six-well contract for a semisubmersible rig.
These contract wins are important ones for the deepwater industry, which had seen new awards fall to the lowest level since the financial crisis last quarter. This slowing market had been particularly concerning to Seadrill investors as the company is in the middle of building out its fleet and has several upcoming drillships without contracts.
The good news here is that drillers like Freeport-McMoRan are beginning to make plans to drill again after energy companies reset expectations after seeing surging project costs. The fact that deepwater explorers are beginning to sign new contracts should keep drillers like Seadrill, Rowan and Ocean Rig utilizing as close to 100% of capacity as possible, which is what investors want to see.
To help investors keep up with the latest contracts I created the slideshow below. It details the drillships that Seadrill, Ocean Rig and Rowan were able to get under contract as well as what energy companies joined Freeport-McMoRan in securing new rigs.
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