Danish contractor Maersk Drilling is to be bought by US Noble and headquartered in Houston if an agreed merger goes ahead next year, it said November 10. Both companies’ boards and all their major shareholders are in favour.
It said the two companies shared “a very strong conviction in the compelling industrial logic behind the creation of a world class offshore driller with the scale, capabilities, and resources to successfully serve a broad range of customers.”
Maersk Drilling’s chairman Claus Hemmingsen said the merger would offer clients “increased scale, global reach, and industry-leading innovation. The combination will create value for all shareholders and will offer investors a unique opportunity to benefit from the market recovery, a robust financial position and strong free cash flow potential, all paving the way for the potential return of capital to shareholders.”
The combination is expected to generate annual potential cost synergies of $125 million within a few years.
Noble’s CEO Robert Eifler will become president and CEO of the combined company while the other six seats board will be shared equally. Depending on the take-up of cash in lieu of shares which has a limit, the new company will be owned roughly equally by the current shareholders.
Maersk parted company with AP Moller in 2016. Maersk’s exploration and production business was bought the following year by the French operator TotalEnergies.
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