Rig Operator Giant Seadrill Notes Record Second Quarter

Offshore rig operator major Seadrill Limited out-performed analyst expectations after reporting its best-ever net income and operating results for the second quarter of 2013.

Seadrill’s 2Q 2013 net income was $1.75 billion, while earnings per share were $3.68. The ordinary quarterly cash dividend climbed 3 cents to reach 91 cents.

Total operating income was up 3 percent to $507 million, well above analyst predictions of $443 million. Seadrill had an overall operating margin of 40 percent, compared with 38.8 percent from the first quarter, and higher than analyst expectations of 38.7 percent.

Total assets rose to nearly $3 billion from $2.35 billion over the course of the quarter. The gain was due to increased marketable securities and other assets.

Seadrill believes it is laying the groundwork for continued strong profits in the coming years as the energy industry turns to fruit hanging higher on the tree – exploration in the harsh environment of difficult waters.

By 2020, the company expects to have 27 new rigs and drillships. Seadrill had an average economic utilization of 98 percent and 99 percent for its jackups in the second and first quarters of the year, respectively.

Analysts at Barclays said that Seadrill’s earnings release “has positive implications for the stock.”

“The company reported higher-than-expected earnings, increased its dividend, reported strong utilization and provided a robust outlook,” Barclay said.


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