Schlumberger upset with ONGC over Halliburton

Vol 20, PW 1 (22 Sep 16) People & Policy

Halliburton better hold off celebrating its winning bid in ONGC's tender to provide integrated services for five deepwater rigs because rival Schlumberger is seriously thinking of protesting the award.

This report learns Schlumberger is livid after ONGC ignored its criticism of Halliburton's technical qualifications and went ahead and opened price bids on September 16. Halliburton quoted $224m to provide marine logistics, helicopter, logging, cementing, testing and other services needed to drill and complete 35 development wells at the KG-DWN-98/2 deepwater block.

Sore loser Schlumberger, which quoted $234m, is now thinking of approaching ONGC's Independent External Monitors (IEMs) to protest against the Halliburton award. "There were some deficiencies in the technical bid submitted by Halliburton," says an industry source.

"I don't have details. But it had something to do with the vessels Halliburton is offering and the directional drilling tool." Schlumberger wrote to ONGC before the price bids were opened on September 16 with its objections to Halliburton's technical bid.

"Either someone at ONGC chose to ignore Schlumberger's letter intentionally," says another source. "Or they felt that the deficiencies highlighted were insignificant." ONGC, it seems, wants to award the contract to Halliburton soon because it needs the services urgently for two rigs already on hire: Jack Bates from Transocean and Aban Abraham from Aban Offshore.

ONGC is planning to hire three more.