SeaDrill Drops Plans for Smedvig Takeover

SeaDrill Limited has in notices to the Oslo Stock Exchange on January 4 and 5, 2006 notified the market that it has sought to establish whether or not it is possible to gather a satisfactory level of pre-acceptances for a voluntary offer for Smedvig ASA.

The potential voluntary offer would have been made at an offer price of NOK 201 per Smedvig class A share ("SME") and NOK 160 per Smedvig class B share ("SMEB"), provided a satisfactory level of pre-acceptances of 1/3 of all SME. The potential offer would have been made subject to a total acceptance level of more than 50% of the SME shares.

Although many of the larger shareholders supported this initiative, SeaDrill has concluded that there was not adequate support from a sufficient number of shareholders. SeaDrill will as a consequence not proceed with today's intended offer, but will consider all available options.