Seadrill Dumps Aker Drilling, Picks Up $5.72 Million in Scorpion Shares

In an effort to "continuously strengthen its position as a preferred provider of offshore drilling and well services," Seadrill completed selling 17,843,900 shares in Aker Drilling at a price of U.S.$7.20. The sale gained Seadrill approximately $128.5 million. Later that day, Seadrill purchased 500,000 shares in Scorpion Offshore at an average price of $11.44.

The move comes during the same week Seadrill announced it had sold 431,400 shares in Aker Drilling at an average price of $7.29. Seadrill's move with Scorpion puts it in control of 8,532,300 shares, or 15.93% of the company's outstanding shares.

Earlier this month, Seadrill made a voluntary offer to purchase all of Aker Drilling's outstanding shares if Aker Drilling would allow Seadrill to perform a valuation of Aker by way of a "due diligence review of its assets and financing and a 90 percent acceptance level."

Aker's board of directors rejected access to Seadrill. Seadrill withdrew its offer, seeking to unload the shares it had purchased.

Seadrill, a Bermuda-based international offshore drilling contractor, currently owns 37 drilling units, with 13 under construction. The company operates in 15 countries on five continents.

Seadrill claims its drilling fleet is "one of the most modern in the world due to its emphasis on the technically demanding segments of the offshore drilling industry."

Furthermore, Seadrill's January dealings are part of the company's drive "to achieve its growth targets through targeted alliances, investments, organic growth and acquisitions."

The company possesses more than 30 years of drilling experience in the harsh environments of Europe's northern offshore areas.

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