Rig Firm Seadrill Postpones Deadline On $9 Billion Debt Restructuring
OSLO, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Oil drilling rig operator Seadrill has again postponed a deadline for restructuring its $9 billion debt, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
The complex negotiations, comprising bond holders, rig-building yards and more than 40 banks, are now expected to be completed by the end of April 2017, while the company had earlier said it aimed to end the talks in 2016.
Oslo-listed Seadrill, controlled by billionaire tycoon John Fredriksen, had initially planned to present a plan for restructuring its finances in the first half of 2016.
The company on Wednesday said it had reached a deal to extend the maturity of debt on one of its rigs, the West Eminence, to April 30 from Dec. 31, thereby allowing the firm's negotiations to continue past the earlier deadline.
"Good progress has been made on the overall terms and structure of an agreement with our banks that will re-profile all secured credit facilities to mature in the period from 2020 to 2023, reduce our fixed amortization obligations and amend financial covenants," Seadrill said.
"We have initiated engagement with bondholders and potential providers of new capital on the other key elements of our restructuring plan ... We now expect to conclude the restructuring by the end of April 2017," it added.
Seadrill has hired Morgan Stanley and Houlihan Lokey as financial advisors and Slaughter & May and Kirkland & Ellis as legal counsel.
(Reporting by Terje Solsvik, editing by Camilla Knudsen)
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