ONGC seven-rig tender attracts 25 jack-ups

Vol 13, PW 18 (25 Feb 10) Exploration & Production

Desperate to get their idle rigs working again, a flood of newcomers have submitted bids in ONGC's tender to replace seven jack-ups whose three-year contracts end in May this year.

Eleven contractors offered 25 rigs when bids were opened on February 11. Most significantis London-based British American Offshore - also known as Rowan Drilling - whichis bidding in an ONGC tender for the first time and offered six rigs:Arch Rowan,Rowan California,Charles Rowan,Gilbert Rowe,Rowan MiddletonandRowan Paris.

“All of them are 'stacked' at a Lamprell yard in Dubai,â€‌ says a drilling contractor. “This gives you some idea of just how desperate everyone is for work!â€‌ Another newcomer is Texas-based Noble Drilling, which offered two rigs through Indian company Deepwater Drilling:Noble Kenneth DelaneyandNoble Gus Andros.

Noble also offered a third rigNoble Charlie Yesterthrough its agent, Gurgaon-based Jindal Drilling.Charlie Yesteris already on contract to ONGC and up for re-hire.

Texas-based Ensco Drilling, which has a global rig fleet of eight ultra-deepwater semi-submersibles and 42 jack-ups, also pitched in withEnsco 51andEnsco 57,offered through Delhi-based Jagson International, andEnsco 50offered through Mumbai-based Great Offshore. Also in the race is London-based Foresight Drilling withForesight Driller-7and UAE-based private equity firm Fortune Super Equity with an as yet unnamed rig.

Transocean, the world’s largest offshore drilling contractor and with the largest offshore rig fleet in India, offered four rigs already on hire to ONGC:Ron Tappmeyer,Trident-XII,Randolph Yost,JT Angel. It also offered three more jack-ups:GSFAdriatic II,GSF Galveston KeyandGSF Rig 134.

Pride International offeredPride Hawaiiand also offeredPride Pennsylvania. Texas-based Hercules Offshore is also in the race withHull number 179offered through Dubai-based MENAdrill.

Chennai-based Aban Offshore has offeredAban IV.