Offshore drilling contractor Vantage Drilling reported a net loss attributable to controlling interest of approximately $31.9 million for the second quarter of 2020.
For comparison, Vantage Drilling's 2Q income last year was $590 million, however, this result was mainly due to Vantage receiving around $700 million from Petrobras as part of an arbitration award over a previously canceled contract.
As of June 30, 2020, Vantage Drilling, which operates a fleet of drillships and jack-up drilling rigs, had approximately $188.4 million in cash, including $13.1 million of restricted cash, compared to $242.9 million in cash, including $11.0 million of restricted cash at December 31, 2019.
Commenting on Thursday, Ihab Toma, Vantage Drilling's CEO, said: “Despite the very challenging conditions for offshore drilling during the COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis, we successfully completed the first-ever well offshore Lebanon with the Tungsten Explorer during the second quarter and were awarded a new contract in Montenegro for the Topaz Driller."
The Tungsten Explorer drillship was used by France's Total offshore Lebanon on offshore Block 4, however, the well failed to strike hydrocarbons. Vantage's fleet status report shows Total might use the rig for more drilling off Lebanon in 2021.
As for the Topaz Driller, the jack-up will drill for Italy's Eni in the Adriatic Sea, offshore Montenegro, under a 180-day contract scheduled to start in 2021.
Vantage's CEO further said the company had during the quarter started working on cost reductions "across the board," which included job cuts and salary reductions.
He said: " We secured material price reductions from vendors, initiated significant headcount and salary reductions both onshore and offshore and implemented other cost reduction measures to reflect the lower levels of operating activity. While the decision to reduce personnel was difficult, we remain committed to seek measures to reduce our spending and to conserve cash while remaining focused on performance, but never at the expense of safety.”
Toma did not say how many people were laid off nor how big the salary cuts were.