Awilco Drilling Scores One-well Contract for WilPhoenix Drilling Rig

April 19, 2021

WilPhoenix drilling rig - Image by MustangJoe/Flickr, shared under CC0 license
WilPhoenix drilling rig - Image by MustangJoe/Flickr, shared under CC0 license

Offshore drilling contractor Awilco Drilling has secured a contract for its WilPhoenix semi-submersible drilling rig.

The company said Monday that it had signed a contract with Ithaca Oil and Gas Limited, which will use the WilPhoenix for a single exploration well at Fotla in Block 22/1b. 

Ithaca had planned to drill the Fotla well in 2020, but it then delayed the drilling operation for 2021, citing Covid-19 impact and low oil prices.

"The [Fotla] well will commence no earlier than 31st May 2021," Awilco said Monday, without sharing the financial details of the contract.

WilPhoenix is one of Awilco Drilling’s two 1980s-built Enhanced Pacesetter semi-submersibles. 

It is equipped for drilling in water depths up to 1,200 ft. The other rig, the WilHunter, has been cold-stacked since 2016 without employment prospects. 

Awilco had in 2018 and 2019 ordered two new semi-submersibles from Keppel, at $425 million apiece, with the aim of breaking into the Norwegian harsh-environment offshore drilling market.

The rig contracts were, however, terminated last year, and the two companies are now involved in arbitration cases to resolve their disputes over the two rig orders.




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