The placement was made last evening and this morning by Fearnly Fonds and First Securities.
The total amount of approximately US $80 million is for the exercise of the two first new-build options at QGM Group LLC, a rig construction yard in the United Arab Emirates.
QGM is presently reconstruction the jackup Thule Power for Thule Drilling, now due to be completed for delivery during the second half of August 2006 and committed on a 5-year bareboat charger at US $80,000 per day through a letter of intent with a major national oil company in the Middle East.
Thule has entered into a construction agreement under Thule's option program at QGM to build to "Friede & Goldman Super M2" designed-rigs. This is a proven design with more than 30 units built. The rig has a 300' water depth capacity and can drill down to 30,000' with 3,000 ton variable load, has a cantilever reach of 50', and is otherwise fitted with "state of the art" equipment. This design and equipment specification is ideally suited to Middle East requirements, the fastest growing JU market in the world.
The total new-build cost per rig is approximately US $126 million including contingency with delivery of one rig in November 2007, and the second rig during the first quarter of 2008. This is an early delivery compared with the majority of other jackups under construction. The price compares very favorably with new-builds offered from other yards.
Through the experience with the marketing of Thule Power, Thule Drilling intends to take advantage of the contacts made in the Middle East to work towards securing long term contracts for the two units to be named Thule Energy and Thule Force at a relatively early phase of the construction process.
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