Thule Acquires Two Semisub Platforms

Thule Drilling has entered into a firm agreement to aquire the two former semisubmersible drilling rigs "Gulfdrill 7", (Former Sedco 708) owned by Momentum Engineering, Dubai and the "Seascout" owned by Atwood Oceanic. Both units are banned from being maintained or upgraded to ordinary drilling units by previous owners, however the ban on Gulfdrill 7 expires in 2008.

There are mainly three purposes for which these platforms can be used: accomodation, service platform or tender rig or as floating production unit. Thule Drilling has not yet decided the best use for the platforms, but accommodation is the most likely alternative. However, studies have been carried out by the previous owners for modifying the Seascout into a tender rig.

The price for the two units is US $27 million in total.

The financing of the aquisition will be done by a private placement of 7,500,000 shares at a price NOK 26.50. The equity offering was placed mainly to institutional and former investors on 23 August 2005. The share issue will be subject to approval on an Extraordinary Shareholders meeting due to be held on 15 September 2005.

Gulfdrill 7: The rig was built in 1976, is of the Sedco 700 series, a well-proven design that has also operated in the North Sea. The rig was last in operation as a drilling rig 2002 West Africa by Transocean. The hull is generally in a good condition, and all marine equipment is maintained. This includes: Cranes, main engines with power distribution systems, propellers, anchor winches with anchors and chain accommodation for 100 persons. The rig is classed with ABS. The rig is presently anchored offshore Dubai, manned with a minimum safety crew. The rig can operate in 2000 ft of water depth.

Seascout: The rig was built 1974, ABS classed as a semisubmersible drilling rig, capable of operating in 2000 ft of water depth. The hull is basically a bare deck, with only limited marine equipment remaining like anchors winches and chains. The rig is presently laid up as Mobile Middle Bay Port, Alabama, USA.

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