Transocean Sedco Forex Closes Sale of Two Rigs

Transocean Sedco Forex Inc. announced that a joint venture in which the company holds a 25% interest has closed on the sale of two semisubmersible rigs to Pride International Inc.

In exchange for the semisubmersible rigs Sedco Explorer and the Drill Star, the Sea Wolf Drilling Limited joint venture received approximately $45 million in cash and 3.03 million shares of Pride common stock.

Transocean Sedco Forex will accelerate the amortization of deferred gains relating to both rigs, which are derived from the original sale of the rigs by the company to the joint venture. This will result in the recognition of an incremental pretax gain of approximately $27 million during the first quarter of 2001. The company will continue to operate the Drill Star under a bare boat charter agreement until approximately September 2001. The amortization of the Drill Star's deferred gain will continue through September and will produce incremental gains totaling an estimated $12 million in both the second and third quarters of 2001. The company's bare boat charter on the Sedco Explorer has been terminated.

Both semisubmersible rigs are located in the U.K. sector of the North Sea. The Drill Star and Sedco Explorer have been renamed the Pride North Atlantic and the Pride North Sea, respectively.