|Monday, December 13, 1999
Transocean Offshore Inc. announced today that its drillship Discoverer Enterprise has been accepted by BP Amoco and has begun work under a five-year contract with BP Amoco valued at more than $360 million. The dynamically positioned Discoverer Enterprise is the first of a new class of advanced, ultra-deepwater drillships employing the company's proprietary dual-activity drilling system. The vessel has completed equipment appraisal and testing in more than 6,100 feet of water at BP Amoco's Neptune location in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. It is currently completing plug-and- abandonment work, and after that, it is expected to begin drilling an appraisal well in the Crazy Horse field. "The Discoverer Enterprise introduces one of the most technologically advanced offshore drilling units launched to date," said J. Michael Talbert, Chairman and CEO of Transocean Offshore. "We are looking forward to pioneering a new era in deepwater drilling for customers with our proprietary dual-activity drilling." With its dual-activity drilling capability, the Discoverer Enterprise conducts drilling steps simultaneously, rather than in the sequential steps taken by conventional rigs. The vessel, which has two drilling stations housed in a single derrick, is designed to reduce the cost of a typical deepwater well by up to 40 percent. It has the capability to work in water depths of up to 10,000 feet. Two ultra-deepwater drillships identical to the Discoverer Enterprise, now in various stages of completion, are being constructed for Transocean Offshore for expected delivery in 2000. The vessels, the Discoverer Spirit and the Discoverer Deep Seas, are contracted for under five-year agreements with Unocal's Spirit 76 unit and Chevron, respectively. Transocean Offshore Inc. is an international offshore drilling company engaged in contract drilling of oil and gas wells. The company specializes in technically demanding segments of the offshore drilling business, including industry-leading positions in deepwater and harsh environment drilling services. The company also provides international turnkey, coiled tubing and integrated drilling services to customers worldwide.