Hunting Divests Certain Tubular Assets

The Board of Hunting has agreed to dispose of certain tubular assets of its Hunting Energy Services division to Sooner Pipe Inc., a subsidiary of Oil States International, Inc., for a cash consideration of approximately US $45 million (£25 million).

Hunting is disposing of its oil country tubulars in diameters of 5 inches and above but will continue, in the US, to supply oil country tubulars in diameters below 5 inches for premium tubing in oil and gas wells. This agreement applies only to distribution in the US as Hunting will continue its profitable tubular activities in Canada, Europe, China and South East Asia.

The value of the assets being divested is approximately US$45 million (£25 million). In the year ended 31 December 2003, the assets generated a loss of US $1.3 million (£0.8 million).

Dennis Proctor, Chief Executive of Hunting, commented: 'The casing tubulars of which we are divesting are used primarily in deep water, Gulf of Mexico completions and this market has been depressed for the last two years. In our annual report, we set out our strategy to allocate resources towards activities providing better returns and reducing debt. The transaction will enable us to reduce debt whilst retaining the higher returns generated by our premium tubing assets.'