Patterson-UTI to Expand USA Drilling Fleet 11%

Patterson-UTI to Expand USA Drilling Fleet 11%
Patterson-UTI's Apex PK high-spec rig. PHOTO SOURCE: Patterson-UTI Energy

Onshore U.S. drilling specialist Patterson-UTI Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: PTEN) revealed Tuesday that it will add 16 super-spec drilling rigs to its 150-rig domestic fleet.

Patterson-UTI will add the land rigs via its pending $295 million acquisition of Pioneer Energy Services Corp. (OTCPK: PESXQ), which it announced Tuesday.

“As a leading provider of contract drilling services in the United States, we are proud to announce this transaction,” Patterson-UTI CEO Andy Hendricks remarked in a written statement emailed to Rigzone. “Pioneer’s high-quality fleet of 17 drilling rigs in the United States, of which 16 are super-spec, will be a valuable addition to our business. Additionally, many of these rigs are capable of substituting cleaner-burning natural gas for diesel, a technology that is becoming increasingly important to operators for reduced emissions.”

According to Patterson-UTI, the acquisition deal will retire all of Pioneer’s debt. Moreover, it stated the agreement calls for issuing up to 26,275,000 shares of Patterson-UTI common stock plus a $30 million cash payment. In addition to growing Patterson-UTI’s U.S. super-spec rig fleet to 166 units, nearly one-half of which will be able to run on alternative power sources, the transaction will expand the firm’s geographic footprint internationally with the addition of eight pad-capable rigs in Colombia, Patterson-UTI noted.

Hendricks pointed out that Pioneer has worked in Colombia for 14 years with an experienced operations team and well-established infrastructure.

“I want to recognize the Pioneer employees for their hard work in creating such an attractive company with great performance for their customers, and I look forward to welcoming the Pioneer employees to the Patterson-UTI family,” commented Hendricks.

The boards of Patterson-UTI and Pioneer have unanimously approved the transaction, stated Patterson-UTI, which added that it has struck an agreement with stockholders who represent approximately 88% of Pioneer’s outstanding voting power to vote for the deal.

Pioneer Energy Services’ holdings also include a 123-service-rig well service business in the Gulf Coast region that Patterson-UTI expects to divest following the transaction.

Patterson-UTI stated that it anticipates closing the transaction in the fourth quarter of this year, adding the agreement awaits regulatory and Pioneer Energy Services stockholder approvals.

To contact the author, email mveazey@rigzone.com.



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